Swimming: Halsall in the pink for golden Games
London Aquatics Centre
Friday 09 March 2012
Wearing a striking coral-pink suit, Fran Halsall ensured her multi-medal Olympic hopes stayed on course with a dominant performance in the British trials last night. On International Women's Day it was another good evening for Britain's female swimmers, who are heading towards July's Games on a wave of optimism.
Halsall was joined in the Olympic team by Amy Smith, who finished in her wake in the 100m freestyle, and Stacey Todd. Smith and Todd, in the 200m breaststroke, both did personal bests, while Halsall has never swum faster at this early stage of the year.
While next week's Australian trials may bring a reality check, as will times recorded in the United States and around Europe over the coming months, Michael Smith, Britain's (Australian) performance director, will be pleased that most of his swimmers have matched the lofty billing he gave them ahead of the week-long trials.
Halsall, along with Rebecca Adlington, who competes in the 800m final tonight, is one of the team's flagship swimmers. In last year's world championships in Shanghai, she finished fourth in this event but was only 0.3sec off gold. That came after a preparation hampered by an ankle injury. This time around her training could not be going better – despite what she said last night after registering a time of 53.57sec, the quickest in the world this year.
"I'm a bit disappointed with the time," said Halsall. "I thought I'd go a bit faster but then I've never been this fast at this time of year, so I can only take good things from it."
Ellie Simmonds underlined the women's fine week by setting the first world record in the London pool in the accompanying Paralympic trials. "The women have been carrying us for six years," said James Goddard. "They must be getting tired."
Goddard and Joe Roebuck did their bit for the men, both qualifying in the 200m individual medley. Roebuck has produced a most impressive series: last night's gold, snatched on the last length, was his second after the 200m butterfly and he also qualified in the 400m IM. "It has been a great week," said Roebuck, a 26-year-old student. "Everything has gone my way."
In contrast Goddard concentrated on this event. He is a 200m backstroke specialist – but that Olympic final falls only minutes before the 200m IM.
Olympic diver has made his modelling debut for Adidas
Latest in Sport
Nottingham Forest vs Fulham match report: Britt Assombalonga hat-trick deepens Felix Magath's gloom
Borussia Dortmund vs Arsenal player ratings: How did Ozil and Welbeck do in Germany?
Colombian women's cycling team kit that makes wearer appear naked is branded 'unacceptable' by UCI president
Bayern Munich vs Manchester City player ratings: Joe Hart? Thomas Muller? Jerome Boateng? Who was the star man?
Chelsea vs Schalke player ratings: Cesc Fabregas? Didier Drogba? Klaas-Jan Huntelaar? Who was the star man?
- 1 Thailand beach murders: Thai PM suggests 'attractive' female tourists cannot expect to be safe in bikinis
- 2 Scottish independence: Learn from Quebec's mistakes and beware of promises. Vote Yes.
- 3 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
- 4 Revealed after 75 years of secrecy: 'Fifi' the glamorous WW2 special agent who tested British spies' resolve
- 5 Hitler’s food taster reveals the horrors of the Wolf’s Lair
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
The political class is doing what Hitler couldn’t – destroying Britain
Scottish independence: Nationalist leader Jim Sillars threatens pro-union companies with 'day of reckoning' after independence
Portuguese academic says British are 'filthy, violent and drunk'
Russia freezes Ukraine into submission: Kiev admits country doesn't have enough fuel for winter
£110 - £200 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Secondary Maths Teacher for spe...
£90 - £160 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Secondary Science Teacher (mater...
£110 - £200 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Secondary Maths Teacher for an ...
£22000 - £37000 per annum: Randstad Education Leeds: A West Yorkshire School i...