LONDON 2012: James gets nod for men's four ahead of Partridge
TOM James has been named in Great Britain's men's four crew for the forthcoming rowing World Cup in Belgrade.
SELECTED: Olympic gold medallist Tom James will be part of the British men's four at the forthcoming World Cup in Belgrade (Getty Images)
Team officials left the position open when announcing their squad earlier this month, with James and Alex Partridge in competition for the slot.
It means James will reunite with Andrew Triggs Hodge and Peter Reed, with whom he won men’s four gold in Beijing, and Alex Gregory.
It is expected the same combination will remain until the London 2012 Olympics, pending results.
James also replaced Partridge in the men's four in the build-up to the Beijing Olympics and he will now move into a powerful eight crew, where he'll seek to upgrade the silver he won four years ago.
“The objective has always been to have a strong strategy across the squad and to produce more than one top boat. There are no winners and losers," insisted men’s chief coach, Jurgen Grobler
Partridge put a brave face on the news but had previously made no secret he wanted to be part of the four - considered the flagship men's crew in Britain's rowing team.
However, he claimed he withdrew himself from consideration because he wanted to focus on the challenge ahead rather than being left in selection limbo.
“I love the eight, I love racing in it and I’m very excited to be with such a strong group of guys," he said.
"At the end of the day I want to be in a place in the team where I know that I can do everything I can to be the best I can be when the Games come round."
© Sportsbeat 2012