Spofforth hints she’ll compete in Commonwealth Games

SHOREHAM-born swimmer Gemma Spofforth appeared to backtrack on her plans to retire after London 2012, hinting the prospect of the Glasgow Commonwealth Games could tempt her to stay on.

The 24-year-old had indicated that the 100m backstroke final, where she finished fifth, could have been her last individual race, but after competing in the 4x100 medley relay, Spofforth was singing a different tune.

And while the former world champion and record holder will definitely be taking some time away from the sport, it may be a temporary, rather than permanent, hiatus.

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She said: “I have thoroughly enjoyed it and I came into this meet thinking that would be it, but I think I will keep the door open and I might keep going. The Commonwealths are in Glasgow and that would be awesome.

“I am going to take a long break and revaluate things. I don’t think I will train the same way, maybe I will just focus on the sprint. I am definitely keeping the door open.

“Four years is a very long time. I will take some time out but I have not had a proper holiday in about four years so, hopefully, I will able to take this passion I have now.”

Spofforth, together with Siobhan-Marie O’Connor, Ellen Gandy and Fran Halsall, were not able to bow out on a high in the medley relay.

Although Spofforth’s backstroke leg put them in fifth position, they fell away on the breaststroke and never recovered the ground, eventually finishing last in a time of 3mins 59.46sec while the United States set a new world record in taking the gold.

That brought to an end a rather deflating week for Team GB in the pool which consisted of just two bronze medals and one silver.

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