Young sprint star Rikako Ikee claimed victory in both the women’s 100 fly and 50 free on the final day of competition at the 2017 Japanese Championships. Additionally, Yasuhiro Koseki completed a sweep of the men’s breast events and Kosuke Hagino continued to shine post-surgery.
Men’s 200 Breast
Yasuhiro Koseki completed a sweep of the breaststroke events with a 2:07.18 victory in the 200. Koseki held off the world-record holder, Ippei Watanabe, to claim gold and finish well beneath the FINA ‘A’ qualifying standard of 2:11.11.
Watanabe, meanwhile, settled for second and a time of 2:07.18, while Kabuki Kohinata was third with a 2:09.96.
Women’s 200 Breast
Reona Aoki added to her 100 title with a win in the women’s 200 breast, leading the race from start to finish for a dominant 2:23.34. Her time propels her to second in the world rankings behind only Russia’s Yulia Efimova (2:21.35).
Satomi Suzuki posted a second place finish of 2:25.27, followed by Sakiko Shimzu’s 2:26.00. Both Aoki and Suzuki qualify for the World Championships team.
Women’s 50 Free
Young sprint star Rikako Ikee delivered the top time in the 50 free, stopping the clock at the 24.57 mark. Her time moves her to seventh in the world rankings and easily qualifies her for the World Championships.
Sayuki Ouchi finished second overall with a 25.41, just ahead of Aya Satou’s 25.52.
Women’s 100 Fly
Not long after the 50 free, Ikee was back in the water and collecting another gold medal. Ikee topped the field in the women’s 100 fly with a dominating 57.39, moving her to fifth in the world rankings for 2017.
Suzuka Hasegawa grabbed second overall with a 58.69, while Hiroko Makino was third with a 58.89.
Men’s 200 Back
Kosuke Hagino continued his successful return to competition with a win in the men’s 200 back. Hagino touched first with a 1:56.39 to secure gold and add the 200 back to his list of events for the World Championships. His time moves him to sixth in the world rankings for 2017.
Ryosuke Irie turned in a 1:57.06 to collect the silver medal, also finishing beneath the FINA ‘A’ cut of 1:58.55, while Masaki Kaneko posted a third place finish of 1:57.16.
Men’s 100 Fly
Yuki Kobori moved up to sixth in the world rankings for 2017 with a 51.98 showing in the men’s 100 fly, edging just below the FINA ‘A’ cut of 52.29.
Nao Horumura touched second with a 52.15, also under the FINA ‘A’ cut, and Masato Sakai took third with a 52.44.
Men’s 50 Free
The men’s 50 free was highlighted by a rare occurrence – a tie for first. Shinri Shioura and Katsumi Nakamura delivered matching times of 21.97 to secure gold and create a three-way tie for eighth in the world rankings along with South Africa’s Brad Tandy. The two finished well beneath the FINA ‘A’ cut of 22.47, qualifying them for the World Championships.
Syunichi Nakao completed the top three with a 22.03 dash.
Men’s 800 Free
Naito Ahara was victorious in the men’s 800 free, turning in a final time of 7:54.16 to move to eighth in the world rankings. Ahara’s time just barely slips below the FINA ‘A’ cut of 7:54.31.
Syogo Takeda and Ryuta Osaki rounded out the podium with times of 7:56.86 and 7:57.02 respectively.
Women’s 200 Back
Natsumi Sakai turned up the heat in the final 50 meters of the women’s 200 back to finish victorious with a 2:10.14. Sakai’s time moves her to twelfth in the world rankings for 2017 and qualifies her for the World Championships.
Sayaka Akase was a close second, stopping the clock at a 2:10.22, while Yui Ohashi was third with a 2:10.39.
Women’s 1500 Free
Yukimi Moriyama won the women’s 1500 free with a final time of 16:20.00, moving her to ninth in the world rankings.
Waka Kobori took second with a 16:26.89 and Hanako Ueda was third with a 16:29.10.