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Magnussen to front media after review

Friday 22 Feb 2013 8:09a.m.

Magnussen to front media after review

Australia's biggest fish James Magnussen will break his silence on Friday, amid claims he and members of the 4x100m swim team abused prescription drugs in the lead-up to the London Games.

Swimming Australia confirmed on Thursday that the six members of the men's relay team had come forward to discuss their involvement in a team bonding session in Manchester prior to arriving in the Olympic Village.

SA is expected to identify the relay team members as chief offenders in the independent review, which earlier this week revealed drug abuse and a "toxic culture" in London, but didn't name names.

It's been alleged the relay team used prescription drug Stilnox as part of an initiation ritual and team bonding exercise.

Less than a week later, the so-called `Weapons of Mass Destruction' failed to live up to the hype and spectacularly bombed out, missing the medals altogether.

Magnussen hasn't spoken since the damning review was released.

But the swimming star will front a media conference in Sydney on Friday to address accusations he is a key figure in the report.

Fellow 4x100m members Eamon Sullivan, James Roberts, Tommaso D'Orsogna, Cameron McEvoy and Matthew Targett will also open up on their involvement on Friday.

The relay team have previously admitted to engaging in schoolboy pranks in the Manchester camp, but have denied the more serious Stilnox allegations.

Australia's swimming team won just one gold medal at last year's Games, plus six silver and three bronze - the lowest haul in the pool in two decades.

After two separate reviews into the team's performance, it's been revealed drunkenness, bullying, in-fighting and breaks in curfew destroyed team morale.

Leadership was non-existent and communication was poor in what was described as the "lonely Olympics".

The report said some swimmers were upset at the attention being given to the big stars at the Games.

NZN

 
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