Scott Gibson all but booked his ticket to the Commonwealth Games last night at the British Swimming Championships, a fortnight after his chances looked dead in the water.

The 22-year-old, who competes for Edinburgh University, set a Scottish record of 25.38 seconds in the men’s 50 metres backstroke in the opening morning heats in Sheffield.

He was later pipped to the British title by Canadian transfer Sebastian Somerset in coming second in the final.

But ducking under Scotland’s consideration time for Birmingham twice in one day has Gibson gearing up for a breakthrough summer.

He said: “Two weeks ago, I tested positive for Covid. So to come here and even just swim best times is more than I could ask for. And being consistently under the consideration is pretty good all things considered given my prep, I’m happy with it.

“It did take the pressure off that I’ve banked swims earlier in the year. I’m a bit gutted about the end result but given the uncertainty I had going into this meet, I’m pretty buzzing too.”

Stirling University’s Martyn Walton also put himself in the frame for Brum by taking the B final in 25.59, weeks after switching allegiance to Scotland. “It was a decision I made after five years of residency,” the former Englishman said. “It was one I was really happy to make - to be honest, it’s really spurred me on.”

With the event also doubling as the UK’s trials for June’s world championships in Budapest, Adam Peaty laid down a marker for more global glory by sweeping to the 100m breaststroke title.

The world record holder, unbeaten in the event since 2014, clocked 58.58 secs in only his second competition since retaining his Olympic title to beat out James Wilby - with Scots prospect Archie Goodburn just 0.04 outside the Birmingham mark in fourth.

Ross Murdoch and Craig Benson earned Commonwealth qualifying times in the heats but then pulled out of the final to save their energy for today’s 50m breaststroke.

And Benson, the two-time Olympian, believes the splash and dash gives him one final medal shot before he calls it quits.

“The 100, and the 200 is really strong in terms of England and Australia,” he said. “Especially in the 200m, the Australians are very, very quick. Whereas the 50 is a little bit more open.

“So the plan's to get on the team and then try and swim as fast as I can. If I swim my best time, I should be in with a shout of getting on the podium. So it's exciting.”

Abbie Wood edged out Freya Anderson by two-hundredths of a second to take the women’s 200m freestyle with a poor heat condemning Lucy Hope to settle for winning the B final.

Glaswegian teen Katie Shanahan was third in the 400m individual medley with Aberdeen’s Yvonne Brown sixth.

While Kara Hanlon was also third in the women’s 50m breaststroke in 31.13 secs, under the Birmingham nomination mark, with Katie Goodburn just outside it in fourth. “That’s kind of a nice job done on the first day,” Hanlon said. “Now I can now get into the meet and hopefully produce some good swimming in the 200 and 100 later in the week.”