Phelps out of Duel in the Pool

2011-11-04 10:23

Atlanta - Michael Phelps will not compete for the United States against a European All-Star squad at next month's Duel in the Pool at the venue used for the 1996 Atlanta Olympics.

Phelps, who won an unprecedented eight gold medals at the 2008 Beijing Olympics after taking six golds at the 2004 Athens Games, is skipping the event to focus on his training regimen ahead of the 2012 London Olympics.

Phelps will compete next week at Minneapolis after altitude training in Colorado following meets in Berlin and Moscow in October.

While Phelps will sit out the event, Olympic champions Ryan Lochte, Natalie Coughlin, Brendan Hansen, Dana Vollmer, Rebecca Soni and Amanda Beard were among 36 competitors named by USA Swimming for the December 16-17 event.

Lochte won five titles at this year's world championships in Shanghai, including head-to-head triumphs over Phelps.

Missy Franklin and Elizabeth Beisel, who each won a world title in China, also were named to the squad.

The European all-star lineup will include swimmers from Britain, Denmark, Poland, Belarus, Austria, Lithuania and the Netherlands.

This will be the fifth edition of the biennial short-course event, with American squads 4-0, taking victories over Australia in 2003, 2005 and 2007 and a European all-star team in 2009.