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Dubliner Nuala in the fast lane for 2012 Olympics

MEET the Irish swimming hopeful for the London Olympics.

South Dublin's Nuala Murphy (21) is looking ahead to 2012, hoping she will get the opportunity to represent her country in the pool.

Nuala, holding the Irish record for the 4 x 200m freestyle relay, told the Herald: "Nothing's been decided yet but the 2012 Olympics is where I want to go. Swimming has come a long way in Ireland and we are all starting to believe in ourselves a bit more so it would be great to represent the country."

The 21-year-old Monkstown woman was due to appear at the 2010 European Senior Championship in Hungary next month, but a back and hip injury may keep her in Ireland.

"I have an injury at the moment, hopefully it will be okay by the European Championships, I can't really tell but I'm going to keep training," Nuala said.

The talented Dubliner, who came seventh in the 1500m freestyle at the World Student Games in Belgrade last year, is focusing on her long-term goals instead of worrying about upcoming competitions. The long-distance swimmer explained that she has been focusing on improving her speed on short distances to improve her overall performance.

"Over the last two years, I've really built up a programme and I can't wait until the Short Course championship. My long-term goal would be the Olympics, I think training for a short course would give me an advantage so I won't rule that out," she said.

The University of Limerick student is thankful that London have been chosen to host the 2012 Olympics.

"I think London is going to be closest to home so it will be great. It's so close to us we won't need to adapt to a new climate or a new time zone.

"If I had to pick anywhere, it would be London so I'm pleased. I'd love to swim alongside Rebecca Adlington [three time gold medal winner in Beijing]. She's British and my age so I look up to her, she's amazing."

Nuala is clearly determined -- she gets up at 5am and trains at least seven hours at Swim Ireland's Limerick High Performance Centre Monday to Saturday.