• Swimming

Halsall backs Brits to shine at Duel in the Pool

ESPN staff
December 20, 2013
Halsall in action for TeamGB at London 2012 © PA Photos

Fran Halsall believes Britain's swimmers have what it takes to help inspire Europe to defy the odds and create their very own Miracle in Medinah at the Duel in the Pool, swimming's equivalent of the Ryder Cup.

The weekend's event in Glasgow sees Europe's elite face off with the best from the US - who won the last two events at Manchester 2009 and Atlanta 2011 convincingly.

Times have been tough for GB's swimmers in recent years, though a disappointing London 2012 and 2013 World Championships were tempered slightly by eight medals at last weekend's Europeans.

And Halsall believes their success in Denmark proves British swimmers are getting over their struggles from of the last two years, and is proof they can help inspire Europe to their first-ever Duel in the Pool crown.

"We can definitely win," Halsall said.

"The European team is really strong this time around and the GB swimmers competing are improving all the time.

"I competed in each of the last two events and they were great - hopefully this time we can really push on and make some really exciting racing."

Young British swimmers such as Adam Brown, Ben Proud and Aimee Willmott have all been handed massive opportunities to impress following withdrawals of swimmers such as French Olympic champion Florent Manaudou and world gold medallist Jeremy Stravius.

Europe's chances were handed a boost this week with the news that Ryan Lochte will miss out after suffering knee ligament damage when an enthusiastic teenage fan knocked him over in Florida.

One swimmer making a comeback will be Michael Jamieson, after he had his heart re-started after an intensive training session last week, who will be looking to continue his preparations in style ahead of next year's Commonwealth Games.

"It's going to be a great event," said Olympic silver medallist Jamieson. "The pool looks fantastic.

"It's the first time I've been back to compete at Tollcross [which hosts next year's Commonwealth Games swimming] and it will be great fun."

Download ESPN's new UK sport app, a fresh and powerful new way to follow your favourite UK sports news, scores and video.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
ESPN staff Close