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Last Updated: Wednesday, 17 December, 2003, 23:10 GMT
Hewitt to miss Olympics
Lleyton Hewitt
Hewitt led Australia to Davis Cup victory in November
Lleyton Hewitt will not play in the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, choosing instead to concentrate on Grand Slams and the Davis Cup.

Hewitt is concerned that the Olympic tennis tournament ends a week before the US Open starts in New York.

"We've come up with a schedule designed for me to do well at the Grand Slams and Davis Cup," he said.

"Although you're still representing Australia at the Olympics, you're doing it as an individual."

The former world number one is keen to add to the Wimbledon and US Open titles he has already won.

The AOC can't compel athletes to compete at the Olympics
Australian Olympic Committee
And the 22-year-old is also desperate to help Australia defend the Davis Cup title they won against Spain last month.

"They're my priorities next year," he told Melbourne's Herald Sun newspaper.

"I would like to win at least one major and help Australia successfully defend the Davis Cup.

"The big thing is when we had the Sydney Olympics in 2000, it was after all the four majors had been played.

"Athens is being held right before the US Open, and it's got the same feeling as the Atlanta Olympics when a lot guys were missing because it was just so close before the US Open."

The Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) said in a statement: "We admire the spirit and tenacity he displays when he wears the green and gold, especially in the Davis Cup for Australia.

"We respect his decision and hope that he might reconsider, but the AOC can't compel athletes to compete at the Olympics - it is entirely their choice."



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SEE ALSO
Australia win Davis Cup
30 Nov 03  |  Tennis


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