Belfast Telegraph

Double Olympian Andrew Bree backs Ards duo to make splash at Games

By David Kelly

Double Olympian Andrew Bree has hailed the performances of Michael Dawson and Curtis Coulter following their nomination times for this summer's Commonwealth Games.

Bree, who represented Northern Ireland four times at the Commonwealths and placed fifth twice in the 200m breaststroke, is delighted the long tradition of Ards swimmers at the Games has continued. Both Dawson and Coulter are from the same club as Bree – a European silver medallist – and he believes they can now prepare themselves to make a splash in Glasgow, after clocking their times at the Irish long course championships in Dublin's National Aquatic Centre.

"I remember back in 1994 watching Gareth Walker from our club swimming for Northern Ireland – since then we have always had someone at the Commonwealth Games," said Bree.

"They're two great guys and I'm very pleased for them because this was their last chance to make the team and they have delivered.

"Hopefully they can now go and do themselves justice in Glasgow."

Last night, another Ards swimmer James Brown picked up a silver medal in the 400m individual medley final – 24 hours after helping the north down club to gold in the 4x100m freestyle relay.

Ben Griffin took gold in 4:31.76 ahead of fellow 17-year-old Brown, 4:35.05.

Jordan Sloan and David Thompson improved their Commonwealth Games chances with consideration times in the 100m freestyle heats. Sloan clocked 51.21 and Thompson 51.28 to qualify for today's final.

Ards girl Emma Reid, 14, took bronze in the 50m butterfly with 28.38 behind gold medal winner Melanie Houghton, 27.55.

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