American swimming great Michael Phelps has confirmed he'll compete in the 400 individual medley at the US Olympic swimming trials, raising the prospect that he could better his record haul of eight gold medals at the London Olympics.
Phelps won the lung-bursting event at the past two Olympics but was considering dropping it from his programme for London, which will be his final appearance at the Games.
But the 26-year-old left open the possibility that he could eclipse his record from Beijing four years ago when he did not withdraw from Tuesday's race by the scratch deadline.
He needs to finish in the top two at the trials to swim the event in London. If he wins it, he will become only the third swimmer, and the first male, to win the same event at three Olympics.
Already the most successful Olympian of all time with 14 gold medals, Phelps has the possibility of winning another 10 gold medals in London.
He also entered the 100 freestyle, 200m freestyle, 200 medley, 200 backstroke, 100 butterfly and 200 butterfly at the trials and could swim the three relays at London.
His decision to remain in the 400 medley adds another round to his eagerly-anticpiated heavyweight clash with his great rival Ryan Lochte, who has entered a staggering 11 individual events in the trials.