Missy Franklin in doubt for Pan Pacs because of back problem
Missy Franklin is suffering from back spasms.
Mark J. Terrill / AP
APGOLD COAST, Australia
Olympic gold medalist Missy Franklin is being treated for a back problem, putting her in doubt for the Pan Pacific championships which start Thursday.
Team USA spokesman Scott Leightman said Wednesday that Franklin had back spasms during practice Tuesday. He told a news conference Wednesday that the 19-year-old Franklin was resting at the nearby team hotel, with her condition expected to be re-evaluated later Wednesday or early Thursday.
''Medical staff did a great job to get it under control last night,'' Leightman said. ''(It) didn't make sense to bring her down here. She'll be monitored and we'll re-evaluate. We don't know yet. It's a fluid situation.''
Leightman didn't elaborate when asked whether she has had a similar injury in the past.
Franklin, who won both the 100- and 200-meter backstroke at the 2012 Olympics among four gold medals, claimed six golds at the world championships last year, including a repeat of the 100-200 backstroke double that she won in London.
She is scheduled to swim the 100 and 200 freestyle, 100 and 200 backstroke and relays in Australia. The 100 backstroke and 200 freestyle are scheduled for Thursday.
Franklin is one of the stars of an American team which includes 18-time Olympic gold medalist Michael Phelps, who is four months out of retirement as he attempts to compete in his fifth Olympics at Rio de Janeiro in 2016.