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Aussies ready for Comm Games

By Chris Pike
2 February 2014 01:11PM EST

AUSTRALIA'S swim stars led by James Magnussen and Cate Campbell feel ready for the Commonwealth Games trials in April now after strong performances in Perth over the weekend.

Magnussen and Campbell were named the swimmers of Aquatic Super Series at Perth's Challenge Stadium held Friday and Saturday nights with Australia putting in a dominant showing in the five-nation event beating Japan, China, South Africa and Brazil.

While as expected Campbell and Magnussen were the stars of the meet, Australia also had several other standout performers including 17-year-old Mack Horton winning the 400m and 800m men's freestyle races and Alicia Coutts dominating the butterfly events.

Campbell added to her 100m freestyle win on Friday night to also win the 50m on Saturday and she has no doubt her performances in Perth will serve as ideal practice for the Commonwealth Games in July, and indeed the trials for that in April.

She also was part of the 4x100 mixed and women's winning relay teams.

"It's good for this time of the year," Campbell said.

"This meet was all about building on some good training and it's all about the Commonwealth Games trials.

"This was our last hit out before those trials because we aren’t doing any competitions, so it was important to not slacken off the training at all and still getting some good racing in at the same time.

"I'm a little bit ahead of where I was last year so you have to be happy with that. I'm just focusing on good starts and good turns. Obviously my swim speed isn’t quite there, but it's important to focus on those skills that I do need to brush up on."

Campbell's 19-year-old sister, Bronte, finished runner-up to Cate in both freestyle sprint events but having her breathing down her neck continues to drive the older sibling on.

"She is always there chasing me," Campbell said.

"It's scary having her training next me and it definitely keeps me motivated."

Meanwhile, Magnussen also won both the 50m and 100m freestyle events as expected with his 50m win on Saturday was on the back of two relay races earlier in the night.

But he still managed to swim 21.88s in a time that was only narrowly behind his personal best of 21.52s.

He is delighted with how his preparations for the Commonwealth Games trials are going.

"It really did feel like a training session with it being my third swim so I was pretty tired and I had to execute my race, but I'm really happy with that," Magnussen said.

"I am happy with where I'm at with my training and preparation at the moment, and I think that is a really good sign for the Commonwealth Games looking forward."

Magnussen was also quick to hose down a pesky rumour that he has been asking for pools to be measured so far this year to make sure his world record will stand if he's able to set it.

"That is the worst rumour," Magnussen said.

"There is no truth to it at all. Somebody started a rumour that I asked for the pool to be measured in Victoria because I was trying to break the record but I have no idea where it came from."

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