Japan Reveals 33-Strong Olympic Roster For Home-Based Games


A total of 33 swimmers have been named to the Japanese roster for the home-based Olympic Games kicking off this upcoming July. The roster includes 17 male and 16 female swimmers, with 22 of them making their Olympic debut. The number is slightly lower than the 36-strong lineup for Japan in Rio.

Among the veterans are Kosuke Hagino, Daiya Seto and Ryosuke Irie while Katsuo Matsumoto and Shoma Sato will be staking their claim on events for the very first time.

For Irie, the 31-year-old will be representing Japan for the 4th time at an Olympic Games. He ties Kosuke Kitajima and Takesha Matsuda for making the most (4) Olympic squads.

Rikako Ikee wowed the world in making the squad as a member of the sprint free and medley relays, having taken a remarkable 4 individual titles at these Trials.

The nation of Japan finished 4th in the overall medal table at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, claiming 2 gold medals, 2 silver medals and 3 bronze for a total of 7 pieces of hardware. The gold medals came in the form of Hagino in the 400m IM and Rie Kaneto in the women’s 200m breast. Hagino has dropped the 400m IM and Kaneto has since retired, leaving those slots vacant for newcomers to top the podium.

You can review our in-depth synopsis of the Japanese Olympic Trials meet here.

Japanese Olympic Roster for 2020 Tokyo Games

  1. Yuki Ikari – men’s 400m IM
  2. Yui Ohashi – women’s 400m IM, 20m IM
  3. Daiya Seto – men’s 200m IM/400m IM (officially pre-qualified), 200m fly
  4. Ageha Tanigawa – women’s 400m IM
  5. Waka Kobori – women’s 400m free, 800m free
  6. Miyu Namba – women’s 400m free, 800m free
  7. Rikako Ikee – women’s medley relay (fly), 400m free relay
  8. Shoma Sato – men’s medley relay (breast), 200m breast
  9. Katsuo Matsumoto – men’s 200m free, 400m free relay
  10. Kanako Watanabe – women’s 100m breast, 200m breast, medley relay
  11. Reona Aoki – women’s 100m breast
  12. Ryosuke Irie – men’s 100m back, 200m back, medley relay
  13. Konosuke Yanagimoto – men’s 800m free relay
  14. Kosuke Hagino – men’s 800m free relay, 200m IM
  15. Takahashi Kotaro – men’s 800m free relay
  16. Tomoru Honda – men’s 200m fly
  17. Miho Teramura – women’s 200m IM
  18. Katsumi Nakamura – men’s 100m free, 400m free relay
  19. Kaiya Seki – men’s 400m free relay
  20. Namba Akira – men’s 400m free relay
  21. Suzuka Hasegawa – women’s 200m fly
  22. Ryuya Mura – men’s 200m breast
  23. Natsumi Sakai – women’s 400m free relay
  24. Chihiro Igarashi – women’s 400m free relay, 80m free relay
  25. Rika Omoto – women’s 400m free relay
  26. Keita Sunama – men’s 200m back
  27. Naoki Mizunuma – men’s 100m fly, medley relay
  28. Takeshi Kawamoto – men’s 100 fly
  29. Anna Konishi – women’s medley relay (back)
  30. Shinri Shioura – men’s 40m free relay
  31. Rio Shirai – women’s 800m free relay
  32. Aoi Masuda – women’s 800m free relay
  33. Nagisa Ikemoto – women’s 800m free relay

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1 month ago

So they would rather have no one swim then 100 fly 50 free and 100 free than put rikako in it 😐

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Virtus
1 month ago

honestly seems like a bad decision to me but hey i’m not in charge.

I don’t even remember the rationale countries have for insanely tough Olympic qualifying standards. (Is it to like, not waste resources on those that might not medal or something? I’m at a loss, especially in this case.)

Reply to  Steve Nolan
1 month ago

Ikee would totally have a shot at a medal

Reply to  Steve Nolan
1 month ago

I honestly think the tough qualifying standards are partially so swimming federations can play games with the discretionary picks, and maintain control of who goes. If they had a more reasonable selection process, coaches and officials couldn’t play politics and make biased decisions.

Sakura Sakura
Reply to  Steve Nolan
1 month ago

The qualifying standards are created based on top 8 time in the world ranking. Japan has this theory ‘if you represent our country, it has to be as good as making the final.’ My opinion is the same with you. Because having the trial almost 4 months before the Olympics, dropping .01 or .07 in 1500 m free can be very possible ( the winner of 1500 missed the cut by .07).

However, in the past they had the 200 meter qualifiers swim in 100… or relay only swimmers swam the individual event. I believe Rikako and Sato will swim the individual 100fly and BR respectively. Ippei Watanabe is one example in Rio. He did not even make the… Read more »

Chalmers > Dressel
Reply to  Virtus
1 month ago

just imagine her seeing other swimmer going slower times but making olympic final..

Last edited 1 month ago by Chalmers > Dressel
Breaking Bad News
Reply to  Virtus
1 month ago

Especially when there’s still about 100 days to sharpen their samurai swords…they should pretty much put two swimmers in every event.

Reply to  Breaking Bad News
1 month ago

And for Rikako it is 100 post cancer-days…..to improve!

Reply to  Virtus
1 month ago

It’s not like they have to spend more money to send her to the games. She’s home and already competing. At most it’s an entry fee or 2. If you take the Pro Swim Series entry fees, it’s $40 for 2 events. Seems like a very small cost not only for her bounce back from cancer, but a story that will inspire others and pay Japan and Ikee very handsomely to tell the story.

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Swammer
1 month ago

wait are there entry fees at the olympics? i refuse to google it, because it just feels ridiculous but it would not surprise me

Last edited 1 month ago by Steve Nolan
Reply to  Steve Nolan
1 month ago

Why would it be ridiculous?

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Walter
1 month ago

comment image

1 month ago

So did they relax their qualifying standards for any event, or is this the same list of swimmers that hit the standards last week?

Reply to  A C
1 month ago

Looks like they didn’t. Shui Kurokawa didnt get the nod even tho he broke the national record in the 800 free

Last edited 1 month ago by DCSwim
There's no doubt that he's tightening up
Reply to  A C
1 month ago

At the 2016 trials, the legendary Kosuke Kitajima got under the qualifying standard for the 100 breast in the semis, finished second place in the final but over the mark, wasn’t allowed to go.

Water Bug
1 month ago

I believe a hosting country should have flexibility to have additional events/athletes

Reply to  Water Bug
1 month ago

Well in this case they aren’t even filling the slots they could be using, so that’s kind of a moot idea.

About Retta Race

Retta Race

After 16 years at a Fortune 1000 financial company, long-time swimmer Retta Race decided to change lanes and pursue her sporting passion. She currently is Coach for the Northern KY Swordfish Masters, a team she started up in December 2013, while also offering private coaching. Retta is also an MBA …

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