More questions than answers have been thrown at world champion Christian Sprenger ahead of the Glasgow Commonwealth Games despite his triumphant return to the 200m breaststroke at the national titles in Brisbane.
Ending a four-year absence in the four-lap event, Sprenger made up for lost time by clocking an impressive two minutes, 08.63 seconds to claim 200m gold on Tuesday night.
He now has the Commonwealth’s No.1 200m ranking ahead of July’s Glasgow Games after finishing in a time that would have claimed 2013 world titles bronze.
Yet Sprenger is still not convinced he should add the 200m to his Glasgow program as he prepares for a seemingly inevitable 100m breaststroke showdown with nemesis Cameron van der Burgh in Scotland.
Sprenger used to be a 200m world record holder – albeit in a supersuit – but these days his focus is the 100m after he finally ousted his Olympic conqueror van der Burgh at last year’s world titles to claim gold in Barcelona.
It seems more light on Sprenger’s 200m Glasgow chances will be shed after he backs up in the heats and semi-finals of his pet 100m event in Brisbane on Wednesday.
“It’s a different race. They used to say years ago your 200 is good for your 100 but I race two different ways,” Sprenger said.
“How much of a toll this 200m has taken on me is another question.
“In all honesty it’s breaststroke at the end of the day, so who knows?
“I will swim fast and make decisions later.”
At first Sprenger didn’t dismiss the notion of emulating his idol Kosuke Kitajima and vying for the 100m-200m breaststroke gold double at Glasgow and then Rio in 2016.
“It’s not impossible,” he said.
But on Tuesday night, he was having second thoughts.
“Is it worth for me to go into a meet with two events on my mind or one thought?” he said.
“There’s lots of questions to ask myself (before Glasgow).
“But one (100m) gold is worth more than two silvers or bronzes or whatever.”
Meanwhile, six finals will be held at the national titles on Wednesday night.
London bronze medallist Alicia Coutts and former British Olympian Ellen Gandy loom as the ones to beat in the women’s 100m butterfly and Thomas Fraser-Holmes will need to hold out Cameron McEvoy to claim his fourth straight men’s 200m freestyle crown.
Finals will also be held in men’s 50m butterfly, women’s 50m breaststroke, men’s 400m individual medley and men’s 100m backstroke.
Heats start at 11am AEDT and finals from 1930 AEDT.