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Melanie Marshall Smashes British Record, Posts World's Fastest 200 Free of '04 -- March 17, 2004

By Craig Lord

LONDON, March 17. FOR the last two years, Britain's Mel Marshall has been moving up steadily in the world rankings. In a recent meet in Britain, Marshall, 22, announced her arrival as a force on the world stage that can no longer be ignored.

On January 25 Marshall, coached by Ben Titley at Loughborough University,
became the first British woman to race inside 1:59 over 200 meters freestyle when she slashed 0.81 seconds off the British record to set a
time of 1:58.51 at Ponds Forge in Sheffield.

The time -- fastest in the world thus far this year -- would have won
the world title in 2001 and the bronze medal at the Olympic Games in 2000.