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Sam Dorman, Olympic medalist diver, retires

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Diver Sam Dorman, a Rio Olympic synchronized springboard silver medalist, announced his retirement in an online letter Wednesday.

“After multiple injuries throughout 19 years of competing, subsequent surgeries and countless hours of rehab, I would still do it all over again,” wrote the 27-year-old Dorman, who battled a back injury and underwent surgery in 2017, then came back to finish fifth at the FINA World Cup with Olympic partner Michael Hixon in June. “At this point in my life, I know my body can no longer withstand the extreme intensity of training and perfection that this sport demands.”

Dorman and Hixon had the best U.S. Olympic men’s springboard result in 24 years at the Rio Games, beating the dominant Chinese for silver with the highest-scoring dive of the competition in the last round. Brits Chris Mears and Jack Laugher edged Dorman and Hixon for gold by 4.11 points.

Dorman called Hixon his “right-hand man” in Wednesday’s letter.

“You set the standard for a disciplined work ethic and demanded a non-negotiable level of excellence in every training session,” Dorman wrote. “I could not have asked for a better Olympic teammate.”

Dorman made more headlines after Rio for getting a matching Olympic rings tattoo with golfer Rickie Fowler.

Dorman also finished sixth and seventh in synchro springboard at the last two world championships and was third in the individual springboard at the 2016 Olympic Trials, where the top two earned Rio spots.

Dorman and Hixon beat 2012 Olympic bronze medalists Troy Dumais and Kristian Ipsen at those trials, which was their first competition since pairing up that spring.

Dorman won one NCAA title at Miami, where he earned a mechanical engineering degree in 2015.

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Gregorio Paltrinieri swims second-fastest 1500m freestyle in history

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Olympic champion Gregorio Paltrinieri swam the second-fastest 1500m freestyle in history, clocking 14:33.10 in his native Italy on Thursday.

Paltrinieri, 25, missed Chinese Sun Yang‘s world record from the 2012 Olympics by 2.08 seconds.

The Italian now owns the second- and third-fastest times in history, including his 14:34.10 from the 2016 European Championships, also held at the 2012 Olympic pool in London.

Paltrinieri is a versatile distance swimmer. At last year’s world championships, he finished sixth in the open-water 10km to qualify for the Olympics, then won the 800m free in the pool in a European record time and finished with 1500m bronze, just missing a third straight world title in that event.

German Florian Wellbrock won the 1500m in 14:36.54 at worlds, with Paltrinieri finishing 2.21 seconds back.

Sun, 28, was in February banned eight years stemming from destroying a drug-test sample with a hammer in September 2018. Sun, who focused more on the 200m and 400m frees in recent years, did not race the 1500m at the 2017 or 2019 Worlds.

Top-level swim meets in the U.S. are scheduled to resume in November with the Tyr Pro Series.

MORE: Michael Phelps qualifies for first Olympics at age 15

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Bianca Andreescu to miss U.S. Open

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Bianca Andreescu withdrew from the U.S. Open, citing “unforeseen challenges, including the Covid pandemic” compromising her ability to prepare to defend her Grand Slam title.

“I have taken this step in order to focus on my match fitness and ensure that I return ready to play at my highest level,” Andreescu, a 20-year-old Canadian, posted on social media. “The US Open victory last year has been the high point of my career thus far and I will miss not being there. However, I realize that the unforeseen challenges, including the Covid pandemic, have compromised my ability to prepare and compete to the degree necessary to play at my highest level.”

Andreescu’s absence means the U.S. Open, the first Grand Slam tournament since tennis resumed amid the coronavirus pandemic, will be without both 2019 male and female singles champions.

Rafael Nadal previously announced he would not defend his title, saying he would rather not travel given the global situation. Roger Federer is also out after knee surgery. Women’s No. 1 Ash Barty didn’t enter, either, citing travel concerns.

Last year, Andreescu made her U.S. Open title run as the 15th seed, sweeping Serena Williams in the final. Ranked 208th a year earlier, she became the first player born in the 2000s to win a Slam and the first teen Slam winner since Maria Sharapova at the 2006 U.S. Open.

Andreescu then missed the Australian Open in January due to rehab from a knee injury that forced her to retire during a match at the WTA Finals on Oct. 30. She also missed the French Open and Wimbledon in 2019 following a rotator cuff tear.

MORE: Serena Williams, reclusive amid pandemic, returns to tennis competition

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