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Sydney Double Backstroke Champion Diana Mocanu Retires -- September 26, 2004

BUCHAREST, Romania, September 26. DIANA Mocanu announced her retirement from competitive swimming on Thursday, according to European swimming news source INSWEEP.

Mocanu, now 20, won gold in the 100 and 200 meters backstroke at the 2000 Games in Sydney at age 16. She became the first Romanian swimmer to win an Olympic title.

Mocanu also won the 200 meters gold medal at the 2001 Worlds in Fukuoka, but she failed to qualify for this year's Games.

She told a news conference she plans to take up a career in swimming coaching: "I lost my motivation as an athlete," she said. "My future is now with coaching."