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Annamay Pierse, of Vancouver, comes up for air on her way to winning the women's 200-metre breaststroke at the World Championship swimming trials on Friday in Montreal. ((Paul Chiasson/Canadian Press) )

Annamay Pierse of Vancouver came close to breaking another world record, cruising to a win in the women's 200-metre breaststroke Friday at the world championship swimming trials in Montreal.

Pierse demolished her Canadian record clocking two minutes 20.71 seconds to eclipse her previous mark of 2:23.77 set in a sixth-place finish at the 2008 Olympics.

It was also the third fastest women's 200-metre backstroke time in history and the fastest time in the world this year. She missed the world record by 0.49 seconds.

"I was going for the world record tonight," said Pierse, also the 100-metre breaststroke winner Thursday in Canadian record time. "But I know where I stand in my preparation for the world championships and I know with all the hard work I'm doing, it's where I'm supposed to be.

"When you've done the work, it helps you deal with the pressure."

Pierse expects the race in Rome to be the fastest in history for the event.

"It'll probably take a sub 2:20 time to win," she said. "It's going to be a really tough field and they are all going to be very fast. I'm going to go for it."

Martha McCabe also went under the previous national record, finishing in 2:23.08., and made the world team.

Amanda Reason of Toronto broke the world record in the women's 50-metre breaststroke on Wednesday.

This week's competition at the outdoor pool at Parc Jean-Drapeau will determine the Canadian swimming team for the world aquatic championships scheduled for July 19 to Aug. 2 in Rome.