The Australian swim team members that were part of the country’s 4×100 relay team at the 2012 London Olympics fronted national media members on Friday to come clean about the latest scandal rocking Australian sport.
'Scandal' may be a slight exaggeration considering the events that have rocked the football world over the past fortnight, but the actions of the team, which included the use of the controversial drug Stillnox, were not befitting of Olympic representatives.
Stillnox had been banned by the Australian Olympic Committee three weeks prior to the start of the Olympics, however the six members of the relay team- James Magnussen, Tommaso D'Orsogna, Cameron McEvoy, James Roberts, Eamon Sullivan and Matthew Targett- each admitted to using one tablet while at a five-day camp in Manchester as part of the lead up preparations to London.
On behalf of the athletes, Australian Swimmers' Association general manager Daniel Kowalski read out a statement.
“We all acknowledge that at the time Stilnox was consumed, it had been recently prohibited by the AOC,” Kowalksi said.
“We own up to it … and are deeply sorry for it.”
Mugnussen said the drug was used a method of bonding.
“In hindsight it was a ridiculous choice and ridiculous method … but I don't feel it affected my performance,” Magnussen said.
In addition, more damning claims came from Jade Neilsen, an Olympic debutant, who complained of inappropriate actions from members of the men’s team at the Manchester camp.
Neilsen accused Magnussen, Roberts and McEvoy on Thursday night, however details of what occurred were not divulged.
“I will confirm that they were being inappropriate and it was towards (name withheld) and I,” Neilsen said.
“I won't specifically say (what happened). It has sort of already come out pretty much what they've done.
“All I can say is their behaviour was completely inappropriate- it was so inappropriate it was not funny.”
The incident involved Neilsen and her female roommate.
The men’s relay team were expected to win gold in London, but instead came fourth.