Andrea Staccioli/INPHO
# stepping away
'Unexpected and difficult choice' as Irish Olympian McMahon retires from swimming at 22
McMahon represented Ireland at the 2012 London Games and won two European medals during her competitive career.

SYCERIKA MCMAHON HAS decided to retire from competitive swimming at 22 years of age.

The Olympian and two-time European medallist announced her decision this morning.

McMahon claimed a silver medal in the 50m breaststroke at the 2012 European Championships in Hungary.

In the same year, she also won bronze at the European Short Course championships in France.

McMahon wore the Irish singlet at the 2012 London Olympic games and in 2013, she shattered the national 100m freestyle record.

Down native McMahon took to Instagram to confirm the news in a statement:

She wrote: “This was an unexpected and difficult choice, as it is not easy to give up something you have done your whole life.

“My sport took me to some unimaginable highs and it’s been an honour for me to represent my country all over the world.

I look back on my career as a multi national record holder, multi European medallist, Worlds semi-finalist and an Olympian with pride. However, I always wanted and felt I was capable of a lot more.

“Regardless, I would like to say a huge thank you to everyone who has been involved in helping me reach my goals over the years.”

McMahon was based in the United States in recent years, having secured a scholarship at Texas A&M University in 2013.

She added: “I wouldn’t have been able to live out my dream as an Olympian or take up a scholarship in the USA without you all.

“As this chapter of my life comes to an end, I cannot wait to see what God has planned for the next one.”

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