Swimming: Moses fights off British challenge

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The Independent Online

Ed Moses proved too strong for the British challenge in the Swedish leg of the Fina World Cup in Stockholm on Wednesday, despite the British team filling the majority of the eight places in the respective finals.

The British breaststroke specialist James Gibson was beaten by the American in both the 50 metres and 200m breaststroke. Once again, all five of the British breaststroke force made it into the 100m final and the outcome was the same.

Moses is the world record-holder over the 100m and won comfortably in 58.08sec, ahead of Japan's long-course world champion, Kosuke Kitajima, who finished in 58.68. Gibson turned at the half-way mark in second but again he lacked the finish and faded to third in 58.87 - followed by the rest of the British team occupying fourth to seventh positions.

Moses is first in the overall men's World Cup points, after knocking his fellow American Michael Phelps off top spot.

In the women's events, Melanie Marshall was looking to force another upset in the 100m and 400m freestyle finals, following her superb win in the 200m. Marshall qualified for the final in fourth place, behind her compatriot Rebecca Cooke who, qualifying as second fastest, was looking to add to her 800m success of the previous night. But it was Marshall, 21, who was the faster of the pair in the final, taking third in 4min 4.36sec. Cooke was fifth in 4min 10.16sec.

In the 100m freestyle, Britain's Alison Sheppard finished seventh in a disappointing 55.05, with Marshall in fourth in 54.20. Sheppard improved in the 100m individual medley, finishing third in 1min 1.67sec, behind second-placed Yafei Zhou, of China, and Slovakia'sMartina Moravcova.

The most exciting British swim was produced by 16-year-old Laura Chase who, after being seeded as seventh fastest for the 400m individual medley, shone in the outside lane to finish third in 4min 44.66sec.