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LONDON, England, July 26. THE Associated Press is reporting that Swedish sprinter Therese Alshammar has suffered a shoulder injury and will not compete in Saturday's 400 freestyle relay at the London Olympics.
Alshammar, 34, is dealing with a pinched nerve in her neck, which is also affecting her right shoulder, according to the AP. Alshammar was scheduled to help Sweden's relay medal chances on a team that would have included 100 butterfly world record holder Sarah Sjostrom.
The report says Alshammar is not completely withdrawing from the Olympics. “If we can get the swelling down she should be able to swim, but if the nerve pain remains it's impossible to complete the rotation of the shoulder,” said Swedish team doctor Rene Tour.
Alshammar is also scheduled to swim the 100 freestyle heats on Wednesday and the 50 free heats on Friday. If she competes in London, she will have participated in five consecutive Olympic Games, beginning in 1996. Her most successful Olympics was in 2000, where she won silver in the 50 and 100 freestyles and bronze in the 400 free relay.
In 2008, she was part of a newsworthy moment in the semifinals of the 50 freestyle, when her bodysuit ripped just before the race. Dara Torres helped to delay the start of the race until Alshammar could put on a new suit.
Alshammar comes into this Olympics ranked seventh in the 50 free with a 24.50 from the Swedish nationals in June.