2023 KONAMI OPEN
- Saturday, February 18th & Sunday, February 19th
- International Swimming Center, Chiba Prefecture
- LCM (50m)
- Meet Site
- SwimSwam Preview
- Day 1 Recap
The 2023 Konami Open concluded over the weekend with some of Japan’s best racers in the water for tune-ups ahead of April’s Japanese Championships. The Championships represent the sole qualifying opportunity for this summer’s World Championships, which are taking place on home soil in the city of Fukuoka.
We reported how 33-year-old Ryosuke Irie won the 100m back on day one and followed up with a strong heats swim in the 200m back as well. You can brush up on the 4-time Olympian’s performance here.
22-year-old leukemia survivor Rikako Ikee snagged a victory on day 2 in the women’s 100m free. Ikee posted a winning effort of 54.43, out-touching Nagisa Ikemoto who settled for silver in 54.51.
The men’s 100m free saw the top six finishers all delve under the 50-second threshold. Katsumi Nakamura got to the wall first, logging a gold medal-worthy time of 49.32. That edged out Yuma Ito and Hirohiro Tanaka who touched in 49.45 and 49.83 for silver and bronze, respectively.
16-year-old Mio Narita was back in the water, contesting the 200m IM to follow up on her 400m IM win from the first day of competition.
Narita checked with a winning result of 2:11.10, keeping runner-up Shiho Matsumoto at bay. Matsumoto settled for silver in 2:11.87.
As for Narita, the two-time World Junior champion’s time represents a season-best, beating her mark of 2:12.23 produced at the Japan Open last December. The teen’s result here also represents a lifetime best, overtaking her previous PB of 2:11.22 which earned gold at the Junior Pan Pacific Championships last year.
With her performance, Narita remains the 4th fastest swimmer in the world this season.
2022-2023 LCM Women 200 IM
As for the men’s 200m IM event, it was Shuya Matsumoto who got it done for gold, posting a time of 1:58.68. That sliced .14 off of his previous season-best of 1:58.82 logged at December’s Japan Open.
Behind Matsumoto was Ei Kamikawabata, the Junior Pan Pacific Championships gold medalist in the 400m IM. Here Kamikawabata got to the wall in a time of 1:59.74, a new meet record for his 18-year-old age category.
That’s a huge lifetime best for the rising star whose career-quickest 200m IM entering this meet rested at the 2:02.00 he produced to win the B-Final at Junior Pan Pacs.
The women’s 200m fly saw Hiroko Makino top the podium in a time of 2:08.77, her fastest of the season. That renders the 23-year-old the 2nd swiftest swimmer in the world this season, sitting only behind American Regan Smith who holds the top time in 2:07.30.
2022-2023 LCM Women 200 Fly
Short Course World Record holder Tomoru Honda was quick in his 200m fly as well, logging a mark of 1:54.00 for the win. Opening in 54.54 and bringing it home in 59.46, Honda beat the field by over a second.
The silver went to Takumi Terada who touched in 1:55.29 while Nao Horomura rounded out the top 3 finishers in 1:56.58.
For Honda, the 21-year-old already owns the top time in the world this season with his 1:52.70 stunner from December.
Additional Day 2 Winners
- Chiaki Yamamoto earned the women’s 200m back victory in a time of 2:11.18, just getting to the wall ahead of Marina Furbayashi who touched in 2:11.39.
- Teruhiro Nishiono got the gold in the men’s 200m back in a time of 1:58.68 after Irie dropped the final.
- The women’s 50m fly saw Ai Soma get it done in 26.17 while Takeshi Kawamoto took the men’s edition in 23.35, a new meet record. Kawamoto also topped the men’s 50m back podium with a time of 25.23. Kawamoto already ranks #1 in the world in the 50m fly with his season-best of 23.25 while he’s been as quick as 24.88 in the 50m back already this season.
- Satomi Suzuki scored the women’s 100m breast victory in a final result of 1:07.23. The men’s 100m breast was taken by Hayato Watanabe in a mark of 1:00.40.
- Miyu Namba produced a winning time of 4:09.86 in the women’s 400m free, hitting the only time of the field under the 4:14 threshold. She’s been as quick as 4:08.65 already this season.
- Ikki Imoto topped the men’s 400m free podium with a time of 3:49.25, a new personal best by .14.
- The women’s 50m back saw Miki Takahashi score the win in 28.56.
Narita’s personal best is 2.10.27 seconds at the National Sports Festival held in September 2022.
oh boy, Narita is going to be 18 at Paris and im afraid she is going to throw a wrench into some US swimmers plans for a medal. Good on her though.