Australia’s Stubblety-Cook Enters The 200 Breaststroke Chat With 2:07.00


While competing on the final day of action of the 2021 Sydney Open, 22-year-old Zac Stubblety-Cook put up the swim of his life in the men’s 200m breaststroke.

Topping the field by over 7 seconds, the Chandler swimmer scorched a personal best of 2:07.00 to grab gold, inserting himself onto the list of the world’s top performers all-time in the process.

Entering this Sydney Open, Stubblety-Cook’s personal best rested at the 2:07.36 he logged at the 2019 FINA World Championships. There in Gwangju, that time rendered him in 4th place behind world record-setter Anton Chupkov of Russia (2:06.12), fellow Australian Matt Wilson (2:06.68) and Ippei Watanabe of Japan’s 2:06.73.

Stubblety-Cook’s 2:07.00 this morning was comprised of splits of 1:02.32 on the way out and 1:04.68 on the way home, ranking the Aussie as the world’s 6th fastest 200m breaststroke of all-time.

All-Time Men’s 200m Breaststroke Performers:

  1. Anton Chupkov (RUS), 2:06.12 2019
  2. Shoma Sato (JPN), 2:06.40, 2021
  3. Matt Wilson (AUS), 2:06.67 & Ippei Watanabe (2:06.67) 2017
  4. tie
  5. Arno Kamminga (NED), 2:06.85 2020
  6. Zac Stubblety-Cook (AUS), 2:07.00 2021

More locally, Stubblety-Cook now becomes Australsita’s 2nd fastest performer to date, jumping ahead of retired Olypian Christan Sprenger.

With his mighty 2:07.00 performance, Stubbley-Cook now ranks as the 3rd fastest man in the world this season.

2020-2021 LCM Men 200 Breast

View Top 26»

Of note, Wilson was in last night’s prelims, posting a top time of 2:08.60 to Stubblety-Cook’s 2:08.92 before dropping the final.

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4 months ago

From 2019, the 200m breaststroke has become a tremendous depth. It’s historically pretty crazy to say that it takes 2 minutes and 6 seconds to win a medal.

Reply to  dddd
4 months ago

2016 had tremendous depth as well. Pretty sure everyone finished within .8 of each other

Casas 100 back gold in Tokyo
4 months ago

Is Matthew Wilson also swimming? What’s his time?

Old Man Chalmers
Reply to  Casas 100 back gold in Tokyo
4 months ago

“Of note, Wilson was in last night’s prelims, posting a top time of 2:08.60 to Stubblety-Cook’s 2:08.92 before dropping the final.”

4 months ago

His best was actually 2:07.28 from 2019 QLD Champs.

Swim nerd
4 months ago

I am going to say it right now, if the 200 breast WR doesn’t get significantly faster over the next year I will be shocked beyond belief. There are so many people capable of breaking it that it’s hard to believe the 2:06 and even the 2:05 barrier will stand for much longer.

Reply to  Swim nerd
4 months ago

Yep- and it maybe a crap shoot of 5 0r 6 swimmers charging for the line, a bit like 2016.

Reply to  Swim nerd
4 months ago

At some point it’ll have to stall out. Right now it feels like it’s dropping a second every quad.

4 months ago

How did McKeown go in the 200im?

4 months ago

What did McKeon swim in the 200free?

Reply to  John26
4 months ago

she didn’t swim it.

4 months ago

Not sure why Matt Wilson has a habit of not wanting to swim morning finals .. is he not wanting to race stubblety cook before trials ?

I would have thought getting to race morning finals with a fellow top swimmer would have been incentive enough to get some finals experience before Tokyo

Reply to  Verram
4 months ago

And faster times for both you would think, alsohaving the psychological advantage for trials, who knows why there were a lot of obviously tired swimmers racing at different types of preparation Next month will tell!

Reply to  Verram
4 months ago

He’s seemed somewhat off his game in his outings so far this year. Not sure of the reasons for skipping so many finals but he’s looked frustrated at times with his times.

Reply to  commonwombat
4 months ago

Wilson narrowly missed Rio games didn’t he from memory ? And this was a perfect opportunity to test his mettle against top quality international level competition given Australians can’t even go outside the country .. and he’s decided to skip that opportunity presented to him before Tokyo

My money is on Stubblety Cook to Tokyo as he seems to have the edge mentally with a couple of good swims this meet

Drama King
Reply to  Verram
4 months ago

Actually , Wilson always swims same times whether its prelims, Semis or Finals.
Look at 2019 WC.
I think after his prelims, he was able to get a clear indication about where he is at.

Reply to  Drama King
4 months ago

One of the common criticism of Australian swimming is that they don’t get as much racing experience compared to their American counterparts with the NCAA system etc and that swimming is only ever known during the Olympics but is not really wel known as a sport outside the Olympics

I think the fact that the top swimmers are reluctant to swim domestic events even when they have the perfect opportunity to do so (ie no lockdowns etc) but still don’t want to race each other outside the Olympics answers both those issues above

Reply to  Verram
4 months ago

Exactly Verram, I see the Americans who are always honing their skills in races & yet in the last few events, despite the lack of competitive races we see our (Australia’s) top swimmers pulling out for 1 reason or another.

Reply to  Robbos
4 months ago

i think top Aussie swimmers prefer to “train” than race each other as recent months have shown .. wrap themselves in cotton wool and bubble wrap until Tokyo olympics … then they complain about lack of race fitness ?

Reply to  Verram
4 months ago

Is it the swimmers or the coaches ? To my mind, its a mix of both but probably more weighted toward the latter. I would agree that the racing culture isn’t as ingrained into the AUS swim as other countries but I was actually heartened how readily so many AUS swimmers took to ISL season 1 but there were only 1-2 coaches involved. Also almost all top line AUS coaches are products of the AUS “system” and that’s all they know …… and very few have been willing to widen their horizons (Taylor a clear exception and much further back the likes of Talbot & Sweetenham). One can understand the motivation of Swim AUS stance re ISL2 however, in hindsight,… Read more »

4 months ago

Americans simply don’t have the work ethic to be good in this, the hardest men’s event.

Reply to  LaBlom
4 months ago

4IM? 2FL?

Reply to  LaBlom
4 months ago

Apart from the patent nonsense of this statement by LaBlom [cf. below rebuttal!], there is a very simple cultural reason: in most countries of Europe, Asia, and esp. Japan, it is the breaststroke that is usually taught first; thus, it becomes the go-to stroke. While in the USA, the crawl or freestyle is almost always taught as the first stroke.

There's no doubt that he's tightening up
4 months ago

In the UK I remember kids were always taught backstroke first. Hmmmm…

About Retta Race

Retta Race

Swim analyst, businesswoman.

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