Australian Olympic gold medallist Matthew Mitcham has called time on his diving career just six months out from the Rio Olympics at the age of 27.
Australian Olympic gold medallist Matthew Mitcham has called time on his diving career just seven months out from the Rio Olympics at the age of 27.
Mitcham won the 10metre platform at the 2008 Beijing Games - where his final dive remains the highest individual score in Olympic diving history.
Mitcham was just the second Australian male to win Olympic diving gold, becoming the first Aussie to take out gold in the sport since Dick Eve in 1924.
In 2014, he picked up gold at the Commonwealth games in the 10m synchro platform event.
On Thursday, he retired from the sport to focus on his media and entertainment career.
"I have achieved everything I hoped for, including the big three - Olympic gold in 2008, world number one in 2010, and Commonwealth gold in 2014 which could never have happened without all the help I've had along the way," Mitcham said.
"I've had a really good run, and I'm so grateful that I've been able to do what I love for as long as I have.
"I have no doubt that Grant Nel, James Connor and Domonic Bedggood, along with our girls, will do Australia proud at the Rio Olympic Games this year.
"I look forward to still being involved in sport in one way or another, but I can't wait to dive into this next chapter."
Speaking to Fox Sports after the announcement, Mitcham said his opportunities outside of diving required his full-time attention.
"I've got so many opportunities outside the pool and I achieved everything I wanted to inside the pool," he said.
"Trying to be an elite athlete and trying to be in media or an entertainer, they both require full-time commitment so I think the time is right for me to really commit to start kicking goals outside the pool."
Mitcham admitted he had thought about retiring after Rio.
"There was that thought, but I had totally made up my mind that I was going to retire after Glasgow in 2014," he continued.
"We ended up doing much better than expected by winning that gold medal, so I did entertain the thought of sticking around for Rio, but I stayed for as long as I could … and I feel like I would not have got as much out of it as the other athletes would so I think it's just the right decision."