TOKYO, Japan, May 26. AYA Terakawa and Ryosuke Irie, two of the top backstrokers in the world, put up solid times today during the second finals session at the Japan Open.
The women's 400 IM featured a dominating performance by Miyu Ootsuka, as she posted a 4:37.36 for the victory. That time was just off her season best of 4:36.64 from April. Izumi Katou finished a distant second in 4:41.90, while Emu Higuchi touched third in 4:43.25. Kousuke Hagino captured the men's medley title in 4:13.13, three seconds in front of Yuuya Horiata's second-place effort of 4:16.17. Yousuke Mori finished third in 4:17.51. Hagino is now ranked tenth in the world with that performance.
Yuka Katou provided some fireworks in the women's 50 fly final, taking down the national record by .03 with a 25.95. She became the seventh swimmer this year to dip under the 26-second barrier. Tomoyo Fukuda touched more than a second back at 27.00, while Yumemi Kikuchi was third in 27.33. The men's sprint fly event featured a very tight finish between three swimmers. In the end, Ryo Takayasu got to the wall first in 23.90, nipping Kouhei Kawamoto by .01. Syota Hara wound up third in 23.97.
In the women's 50 breast, Satomi Suzuki pulled away from the field to win in 31.73, not far off the Japanese record of 31.40. Mina Masatushita also broke 32-seconds with a 31.96. Kanako Watanabe rounded out the podium finishers in 32.17. In another nail-biting finish, Yuuki Okajima out-touched Ryou Tateishi, 27.78 to 27.79, to win the men's 50 breast. Both times are in range of the Japanese national standard of 27.30. Kouhei Tominaga placed third in 28.22.
Aya Takano posted a 4:11.68 en route to a win in the women's 400 free, with Misato Iwanaga in second position at 4:15.22. Sakiko Nakamura grabbed third in 4:17.05. Fumiya Hidaka earned the men's 400 free title in 3:51.75, with Ryuta Osaki (3:53.11) in second and Kentarou Nishiyama in third (3:53.13).
After breaking her own national record in the 100 back last night, Aya Terakawa just missed adding a second in the 200, finishing just outside the record of 2:07.13 with a 2:07.84. She is now ranked fourth in the world, behind Anastasia Zueva (2:06.59), Belinda Hocking (2:06.68) and Meagan Nay (2:07.83). Japanese national record-holder Ryosuke Irie clocked a stellar time of 1:54.80 to comfortably win the men's event. That time stands second in the world this year behind his own 1:54.02 from January.
Haruka Ueda captured the women's 100 free crown with a 54.48, less than half a second outside the national record of 54.00. Miki Uchida finished second in 55.07, while Yayoi Matsumoto was third in 55.36. A trio of swimmers cracked the 50-second mark in the men's 100 free, with Shinri Shioura coming out on top in 49.33. Takurou Fujii snuck into second at 49.61, while Kenta Ito was right behind in 49.63.