Dame Denise Lewis temporarily steps down as UK Athletics president

Denise Lewis of Great Britain celebrates gold in Sydney

Lewis was the first British athlete to win Olympic gold in the heptathlon

Dame Denise Lewis has “temporarily” stepped down as UK Athletics president – two months after being elected.

The former Olympic heptathlon champion was elected to the role in December to replace ex-sprinter Jason Gardener.

However, 51-year-old Lewis has made the “difficult decision” to temporarily step away “with the upcoming Olympics and a hectic summer ahead”.

“I would only want to accept the role when it can have my full attention,” Lewis posted on Instagram on Tuesday.

Since retiring as an athlete in 2005, Lewis has worked as a pundit and television presenter.

She will be working as a pundit for the BBC at the World Indoor Athletics Championships that start on Friday in Glasgow.

Her positions with UK Athletics and the BBC have been questioned in terms of a possible conflict of interest given her roles within the sport as well as one of its key media stakeholders.

The BBC does not comment on individual contracts but the corporation’s guidelines state editorial decisions should not be influenced by outside interests.

Lewis won gold at the 2000 Sydney Olympics after claiming bronze in Atlanta four years earlier.

She also won two Commonwealth golds, a European gold and two world silver medals as well as being inducted into the England Athletics Hall of Fame in 2011.

She was awarded a damehood in the New Year Honours in recognition of her role as president of Commonwealth Games England and for services to sport.

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