98th JPN INTERCOLLEGIATE SWIMMING CHAMPIONSHIPS
- August 28th – August 31st
- Tokyo Tatsumi International Swimming Center
- LCM (50m)
The 2022 Japanese Intercollegiate Swimming Championships began this week with the nation’s top universities vying for the overall team trophy and bragging rights as the top swimming school.
With one day of racing remaining, Nihon University leads the men’s teams in overall points while Chukyo University is ahead of the women’s competition.
Representing Nihon University as one of its team captains, 2-time Olympian Rikako Ikee was in the water early at Tokyo Tatsumi International Swimming Center.
22-year-old Ikee took on the women’s 50 freestyle on day one, firing off a time of 25.09 to come out with the gold medal for her squad. That beat out runners-up Maria Imamaki and Yume Jinno who touched in times of 25.37 and 25.39 for respective silver and bronze.
Ikee owns the Japanese national record in the 24.21 she produced in 2018, with the year after representing the one in which she was diagnosed and began fighting leukemia. She spent most of 2019 in the hospital undergoing aggressive treatment before being released and eventually making her way back to competition in the summer of 2020.
The men’s 50m free at these Intercollegiate Swimming Championships saw Shuya Matsumoto produce a big-time personal best of 22.13 to take a tightly-contested men’s race. Daisuke Konno got to the wall just .06 behind in 22.19 for silver in the battle.
Entering this meet, Matsumoto’s previous career-quickest rested at 22.83. As such, he managed to hack .70 off his fastest ever en route to capture the gold.
Miyu Namba clocked a new meet record in the women’s 400m free, taking the meet title in a mark of 4:07.43. 20-year-old Namba raced this event at last year’s Olympic Games, ultimately finishing in 20th place with a disappointing heats swim of 4:13.49.
Also posting a new meet record was Olympic bronze medalist Tomoru Honda. Racing in his signature 200m butterfly, Honda captured his 3rd consecutive victory in the event at these championships. He hit a new competition standard of 1:54.06, beating the field by nearly 2 seconds.
Opening in 55.00 and closing in 59.06, Honda’s time came after he slowly recovered from COVID-19 which he contracted after this year’s World Championships.
Said Honda on his experience leading up to this competition, “Until the middle of August, my body continued to feel a little sluggish and heavy, and I was more concerned about how to practice in this state and how to survive the tournament.”
“I was relieved that I was able to win,” he said.
Honda took the bronze in the men’s 2fly event in Budapest in a time of 1:53.61.
- Kazuki Imoto logged a time of 3:48.71 to win the men’s 400m free.
- The women’s 200m fly saw Karin Uchida get it done for gold in a time of 2:08.64, getting the edge over runner-up Kotomi Yamagishi who was next in 2:09.02.
- Shinnosuke Ishikawa was the winner of the men’s 100m fly, putting up a solid swim of 51.84 to out-touch Takuro Nishida‘s 51.92.
- The men’s 200m IM saw a trio of 1:58-range swimmers, led by the victorious So Ogata. Ogata posted 1:58.10 followed by Shuya Matsumoto‘s 1:58.52 and Yuki Igaro‘s 1:58.86.