Matthew Wilson Ties Watanabe’s 200 Breast World Record In Semis


After chasing the world record line throughout his prelim swim before succumbing to it on the last 50, Australian Matthew Wilson held on and tied the all-time mark in the semi-finals of the men’s 200 breast in Gwangju.

The 20-year-old Australian stormed his way to a final time of 2:06.67, equalling the record established by Japan’s Ippei Watanabe at the 2017 Kosuke Kitajima Cup.

His previous best time, which stood as the Commonwealth, Oceanic and Australian Records until today, was 2:07.16 from the Australian Nationals in Adelaide, and he had gone 2:07.29 during the prelims here at Worlds.


Comparing the splits of the two world records, Wilson was out much faster to the 100.

Watanabe, 2017 WR Wilson, 2019 WR
28.95 28.80
1:01.33 (32.38) 1:00.77 (31.97)
1:34.02 (32.69) 1:33.68 (32.91)
2:06.67 (32.65) 2:06.67 (32.99)

Wilson joins Watanabe and Anton Chupkov as the only men in history to go sub-2:07.


  1. Ippei Watanabe (JPN) / Matthew Wilson (AUS), 2:06.67 – 2017/2019
  2. Anton Chupkov (RUS), 2:06.80 – 2018
  3. Anton Chupkov (RUS), 2:06.83 – 2019
  4. Anton Chupkov (RUS), 2:06.96 – 2017

Chupkov hit 2:06 for the third time in the first semi, breaking his own Championship Record of 2:06.96 in 2:06.83 before Wilson broke it minutes later.

The two of them qualified over a second clear of the field, with American Andrew Wilson sitting third in 2:07.86. Australia will look to get two men on the podium tomorrow night after Zac Stubblety-Cook had a strong swim to advance in fourth (2:07.95).

The Penrith native will be seeking his first individual World Championship medal tomorrow night, owning two relay golds in the mixed medley relay from both Budapest and Gwangju. He also won gold in that same event at the Commonwealth Games last year and added a pair of bronze medals from those Games and Pan Pacs in the 200 breast in 2018.

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1 year ago

you haven’t updated your list with Chuphov’s time from tonight

Texas Tap Water
1 year ago

Swimswam didn’t think he is a contender and didn’t even mention his name in Day 5 Preview lol

Reply to  Texas Tap Water
1 year ago

Because they don’t care about anyone who isn’t a world/Olympic champion, has swam a WR, or is american.

Wilson was a clear threat coming into this meet. So was Stubblety-Cook (though he is more for the bronze).

JP input is too short
Reply to  Texas Tap Water
1 year ago

They listed him as fourth in their event predictions. I’d say that’s contending.

Reply to  JP input is too short
1 year ago

Correct! And it is still possible he get 4th right n the final! The 200 breast can be wacky.

JP input is too short
Reply to  2Fat4Speed
1 year ago

I said it in the preview article, and it looks like that’s what might shake down come the final: It’ll be really fun to see Wilson go out for it and if Chupkov can find the right gear to run him down. But I guess it’s Wilson(s) now, with how Andrew swam the semis.

I think Chupkov is top-2 for sure – even if he doesn’t catch the winner, he’s going to be mowing people down left and right. Matt Wilson either wins or fades to like 5th or worse. I don’t think there’s an in-between for him.

1 year ago

I really hope Chupkov and Wilson didn’t but to much into to it tonight, if they both have more then the could be a race for the ages.

Reply to  IM FAN
1 year ago

Well it was a fast semi final field so they can’t hold back .. they needed to be competitive and swim at least a 2:07 high to make the final .. the trick is to replicate that swim tomorrow or better it

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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