The 2020 Japan Swim, the competition which represented the nation’s sole Olympic-qualifying opportunity for swimmers, was cancelled due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Originally slated to begin on April 2nd, the meet was nixed just days ahead of time, as Tokyo was facing an increase in the number of virus cases.
The Olympics’ postponement to July 2021, paired with an upheaval in the global qualification competition calendar, leaves swimmers around the world with open questions about how they will now earn a spot on their nation’s roster. Some nations, such as the United States, have already rescheduled their Trials meet. Others, such as Great Britain, have not yet released their revised selection meet plan.
Japan now falls into the former category, with high-level details released just today concerning its qualification meet.
In an effort to answer swimmers’ questions expeditiously, the Japanese Swimming Federation (JASF) held a video conference call with key board members. On the call, JASF members reportedly agreed to hold two editions of the Japan Swim; the ‘2020’ edition will be held in December of 2020, while the ‘2021’ edition will be held in the usual April 2021 time frame slot.
It’s our understanding that only the April 2021 Japan Swim meet will represent an Olympic-qualifying opportunity for Japanese swimmers.
Additionally, the Japan Open, which was originally scheduled for June of this year, is set to now take place in February 2021.
All 3 competitions will take place at the Tokyo Aquatics Centre.