Chinese swimmer Sun Yang's veteran coach Denis Cotterell has severed
all ties with the three-time Olympic champion after his eight-year drug
ban, Australian media reported.
Australian Cotterell, regarded as one of the world's top coaches, had
worked with the freestyle specialist since the 2008 Beijing Olympics
and long maintained Sun was clean.
But after the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) banned Sun last
month for refusing to give a doping sample in September 2018, Cotterell
said he was now "retired".
"I have terminated my contract with (the) Chinese Swimming Association," he told the Sydney Daily Telegraph on Sunday.
Sun insists he is innocent and is to appeal, with his lawyer
reasserting his defence that doping officials who came to his home were
not qualified or authorised, and it was they who decided not to pursue
Asked if he supported Yang's appeal, Cotterell replied: "No."
It was the 28-year-old's second ban for doping, having served three months in 2014.
Nevertheless, Cotterell told AFP at the world championships in South Korea last year: "He's not a drug cheat.
"You can't have the performances he's had over the years without
doing the work. He's been tested year in, year out - hundreds of tests,
winning every year over this period of 10 years."
A vial of Sun's blood was smashed with a hammer during the
contentious testing session in 2018, but he was originally acquitted of
anti-doping violations by world swimming's governing body FINA who
agreed that testers had failed to produce adequate identification.
The World Anti-Doping Agency took the matter to CAS, demanding a ban
of between two and eight years for missing the out-of-competition test.