The tweets will go on, says Rutherford agent after world championships glory

Britain's new world champion long jumper Greg Rutherford will continue to share "his own thoughts and views" on Twitter despite the athlete's use of the social network appearing to strain his relationship with British Athletics.

Rutherford jumped 8.41m for glory yesterday, and has 168,000 followers on Twitter
Rutherford jumped 8.41m for glory yesterday, and has 168,000 followers on Twitter

Yesterday morning, before the athlete won a gold medal in the World Athletics Championships in Beijing, ITV reported Rutherford saying that one or two people in the British athletics governing body "aren’t speaking to me".

He also said that there had been "one or two awkward moments in the lift with a few members of staff" and ITV reported that he went on to say: "I'm not a happy person at the moment, I'll be totally honest with you. And I've got plenty more to say."

Earlier this month, Rutherford attracted media attention when he criticised the kit provided by British Athletics for its athletes at the championships.

He later tweeted: "I'm yet to find an athlete who wanted the change. EVERY athlete I've spoken to wants the union flag." He had also expressed criticism of British Athletics in an article in The Guardian before the World Championships, and yesterday's ITV story reported Rutherford saying that several other athletes had in private "supported a lot of the things that I've said and told me their own stories of what's been going on".

Before yesterday's long jump final, former sprint champion Michael Johnson told the BBC that Rutherford should "do more jumping and less talking".

Greg Kirkpatrick, head of athlete management at the agency M&C Saatchi Merlin, which represents Rutherford, said: "With regards to the claim that Greg is no longer on speaking terms with a number of UKA staff as a result of Twitter, that simply isn't true. Greg has a professional relationship with the UKA team.

"Regarding his Twitter activity, Twitter provides a platform for him to directly speak to the public. What Greg tweets are his own thoughts and views and that shall continue to be the case."

British Athletics did not respond to a request to comment.

Rutherford's latest tweet, meanwhile, would appear unlikely to land him in hot water.

Would you like to post a comment?

Please Sign in or register.