Duel in the Pool: Fran Halsall excited by 'swimming's Ryder Cup'

Fran Halsall believes 'improving' British swimmers can help Europe win the Duel in the Pool.

Duel in the Pool: European Allstars v United States

Tollcross, Glasgow
20-21 December
Listen to live commentary on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra, the BBC Sport website and BBC Sport app from 19:00 GMT on Friday 20 December and 13:50 GMT on Saturday 21 December.

World Championships bronze medallist Fran Halsall believes "improving" British swimmers can help Europe win the Duel in the Pool in Glasgow.

This weekend's event will see Europe's elite go up against the United States and has been dubbed swimming's equivalent of golf's Ryder Cup.

GB swimmers endured a disappointing London Olympics and 2013 World Championships, but won eight medals at last weekend's Europeans.

"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."

The US won convincingly at Manchester 2009 and Atlanta 2011 whilst the withdrawal of French Olympic champion Florent Manaudou and world gold medallist Jeremy Stravius has damaged European prospects in Glasgow.

But the team still possess the likes of Danish world champion Jeanette Ottesen and three-time Olympic champion Ranomi Kromowidjojo of the Netherlands, whilst GB's Michael Jamieson says he is "back to business" following a recent health scare.

And the recent withdrawals have led to late call-ups for British swimmers Adam Brown, Ben Proud and Aimee Willmott.

"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."

The USA will be without multiple Olympic champion Ryan Lochte, who was forced to withdraw with a knee injury after an over-excited fan knocked him to the ground.

In his absence the American team will be looking for inspiration from the likes of Olympic champions Tyler Clary, Conor Dwyer and Jessica Hardy.

The USA women's team also includes Olympic 800m freestyle champion Katie Ledecky, who also won four world championship titles in Barcelona this summer.

"I'm really excited about it," the 16-year-old told BBC Sport.

"I remember watching it when I was a little bit younger around Christmas and it was always fun to watch so it's an honour to be a part of the team.

"The main goal is to win, but that's the same for both teams so it should be really competitive."

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