13 May 2012

Phelps yet to find winning form

6:32 pm on 13 May 2012

Michael Phelps was given another reminder of how far he has to go to get back to his best form when he was beaten in one of his favourite events on Sunday.

Competing at the Charlotte Grand Prix, one of the final lead-up events before next month's United States Olympic trials, Phelps came second to China's Wu Peng in the 200 metres butterfly.

His time of one minutes 56.87 seconds was more than five seconds outside the world record he set at the 2009 world championships in Rome.

The defeat came just a day after he finished second in the 200m freestyle, raising doubts about his fitness and form leading into this year's London Olympics, which the American has said will be his final event before he retires from swimming.

But Phelps, who has won 14 Olympic gold medals, including eight from Beijing four years ago, said he was unconcerned about his results because he was focussing on bigger things.

The U.S. Olympic trials will be held in Omaha, Nebraska, starting in the last week of June.