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CHRIS Walker-Hebborn is determined to improve on past performances when he competes at the World Championships in Shanghai, China, this weekend.

The Bury St Edmunds swimmer has been training with the Great Britain team in Osaka, Japan, ahead of his first 100-metre backstroke heat on Sunday.

And after his double success at the ASA National Championships in June, where he won both the 100m and 200m backstroke events, the 21-year-old is in a buoyant mood.

He said: “Training has been going really well so far. It took a while for my body to get used to the time change but after settling into the routine it is all starting to come together.

“After the times and results I achieved at the ASA Nationals I have plenty of confidence to see me through the World Championships.

“I have set myself one goal and that is to improve on my 2009 performance of a ninth place finish, so to make the final would be great and after that who knows what might happen.”

Walker-Hebborn will also be gunning for glory in the 200m backstroke event which starts the Thursday.

Despite improving form throughout the year putting the former British record holder in the 200m backstroke in a confident mood, he did concede there is always slight trepidation and pressure going into a major championships.

He added: “Swimming at the World Championships is surreal for me. I have never been to the Olympics and this is the second biggest swim meet there is.

“Obviously coming into an event like the World Championships brings a lot of pressure. This is not only because we want to perform for our country, but also because of the pressure we put on ourselves personally to perform to our very best.”