BRUSSELS -- Pieter Timmers, the silver medalist in the men's 100-meter freestyle at the 2016 Olympic Games, will retire from swimming at the end of the season.
The 32-year-old Belgian had initially planned to compete at the Tokyo Olympics, but the postponement by a year because of the coronavirus pandemic has derailed his ambition.
"The postponement of the Olympic Games thwarts my watertight plan, which had already been drawn up years ago: to give everything once more at the Games, and then start a new chapter," Timmers said in a message relayed by the Flemish swimming federation.
"In other words, I will not participate in the postponed (Olympics) in Tokyo in 2021," he said. "It is a shame, but I am happy with it because I want to make my own choices and this was a well-considered decision."
Timmers hopes to compete in the European Championships in August if the event is not scrapped, and he wants to take part in the International Swimming League in the autumn.
"My farewell is therefore only planned within seven months," he said. "And then it is time to train, and for a new chapter."