By Tom Degun

David Davies in waterJune 15 - Double Olympic medallist David Davies has been forced to withdraw from Britain's swimming team for the World Championships in Shanghai next month due to fatigue.

The 26-year-old from Barry in Wales, who won a bronze medal in the 1500 metres freestyle at Athens in 2004 and silver in the open water 10 kilometres in Beijing in 2008, has been advised to take an enforced six-week break.

It is hoped it will help him recover ready to get back on track for the cycle leading into London 2012 meaning he will not travel to China for the World Championships, which take place from July 16-31 and are the biggest international meet ahead of the Games next year.

"It has been a relapse of what I struggled with last year and I don't think I ever really recovered from it," said Davies, who won a gold medal at the Melbourne 2006 Commonwealth Games.

"I pushed myself hard to try to get to Europeans and Commonwealths but hadn't properly got out of the fatigue.

"It has been a frustrating period but I believe it is the best thing to do in the long term.

"To miss the Worlds and to have a break to fully recover will hopefully sort the problem for me.

"Having a break now will give me more time to prepare for London.

"A home Games has always been a motivation for me and it has been a rollercoaster ride to get towards it but I want the break now so I can get ready for Olympic Trials."

British Swimming head coach Dennis Pursley supported Davies' decision to withdraw from the World Championships stating that it is important for the Welsh star to recover for the London 2012 Olympics.

"We discussed it with David and given his condition it looks as though his performances in Shanghai weren't going to be competitive," said Pursley.

"David needs a break of six weeks so it was decided that the break would happen now rather than go to Shanghai and not being as competitive as he could be and then take six weeks out of the water which would impact on the start of his 2012 preparations.

"We felt it was in his best interests and for preparation for London to bypass the World Championships.

"His single focus is on getting ready for the Olympics."

Davies will still play an active role within swimming and will travel to Belgrade with the athletes travelling to the European Junior Championships where he will take on a mentor role to pass on his knowledge and experience to the team.

"I am really excited to be passing on my knowledge and experience to the junior athletes," he said.

"I want to give back to the sport and I think that I can act in a mentor role to help them settle into international competitions.

"Even though I am having a break, it isn't a break from the sport.

"I still want to be involved and this competition is the right way to go about it."

Contact the writer of this story at [email protected]