Olympic winner Patrik Sjoberg reveals abuse | other | Hindustan Times
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Olympic winner Patrik Sjoberg reveals abuse

Former high jump world record holder Patrik Sjoberg has shocked Swedish athletics by revealing that his coach and stepfather Viljo Nousiainen sexually abused him as a young boy.

other Updated: Apr 28, 2011 23:23 IST

Former high jump world record holder Patrik Sjoberg has shocked Swedish athletics by revealing that his coach and stepfather Viljo Nousiainen sexually abused him as a young boy.

The 46-year-old Sjoberg, who won two Olympic silver medals and set a world record of 2.42 metres in 1987, said in his new autobiography "What You Didn't See" that the abuse started when he was 10 or 11 and continued into his teenage years.

Nousiainen, who died in 1999, was a respected figure in Swedish athletics and was instrumental in turning Sjoberg into one of the world's best high jumpers.

That reputation is now in tatters. Yannick Tregaro, coach of Sweden's Olympic triple jump champion Christian Olsson, has also said he was abused by Nousiainen.

"It was a tough period," Sjoberg told Swedish TV on Thursday of the time he spent writing the book.

"There were many memories that appeared that I had suppressed, but I felt as time went on that it became more and more important."

Sjoberg told SVT that the first instance of abuse occurred at a meeting in Malmo where he was forced to share a room with his coach.

Nousiainen later started a romantic relationship with Sjoberg's mother and eventually moved in to their apartment.