Discus ace Robert Harting to end career in 2018

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Berlin (AFP)

Germany's Robert Harting, the 2012 Olympic discus champion, has revealed he will retire after the 2018 European championships in Berlin.

"I am looking forward to this year and next, then after that I'll just be watching," the 32-year-old three-times world champion told website leichtathletik.de.

The burly German, famous for ripping off his shirt when celebrating major titles, suffered a serious knee injury in 2014 when he tore the cruciate ligament while training.

In the build up to last year's Olympics, Harting was outspoken in his criticism of athletes who dope and of the perceived inaction on the issue of IOC president Thomas Bach.

He missed the final, and the chance to defend his Olympic title, at the Rio de Janeiro Games after injuring his back while turning off a light switch.

In his absence, his brother Christoph Harting won gold to keep the Olympic title in the family.

The European championships in his home town of Berlin in 2018 will be his last and he also plans to compete at the 2017 world championships in London from August 5-13.

His passion for his sport is undiminished.

"The feeling when the discus leaves the hand is indescribable and addictive. I want to be in command of my body, and when that happens, the performance comes," Harting said.