October 28 - Michael Phelps (pictured), who won a record eight gold medals at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, will lead the United States team announced today for the Duel in the Pool sponsored by British Gas at Manchester lat er this year. 


The Americans - whose 36-swimmer line-up also includes Olympic champions Aaron Peirsol, Ryan Lochte and Rebecca Soni - will face a select European squad from Britain, Germany and Italy on December 18-19 at the Manchester Aquatics Centre, which staged the 2002 Commonwealth Games and last year's World Short Course Championships.


The short-course distance event is the fourth all-star swim meet in the series, but the first not to feature a US-Australia rivalry.


US swimmers defeated Australia in 2003, 2005 and 2007.


Britain will send up to 18 men and 18 women while six men and six women from Italy and Germany will compete.


A US line-up including 17 Olympians was pulled from top swimmers at the World and US Championships, the US Open and World University Games.


Other Americans on the squad include Olympic medalists Katie Hoff, Peter Vanderkaaym, Matt Grevers and Margaret Hoelzer plus rising stars such as Tyler Clary and Dagny Knutson who are being tipped to make waves at the 2012 London Olympics.