Ryosuke Irie Lowers Season-Best 100 Back To 52.88


The 2022 Japan Swim continued tonight in Tokyo, with the meet representing a qualifying opportunity for this year’s Asian Games and World Junior Championships.

Although he’s already qualified to compete in the men’s 100m back in Budapest at the 2022 FINA World Aquatics Championships, 32-year-old Ryosuke Irie still put on a show in the men’s 100m backstroke.

After establishing himself as the top-seeded swimmer of the morning with a heats result of 53.80, the seemingly ageless wonder powered his way to a season-best performance of 52.88 to take the gold.

Opening in 25.78 and closing in 27.10, Olympic medalist Irie put up the 28th sub-53 second time of his career, further solidifying him as one of the best men ever to race this discipline.

For comparison, the World Record holder Ryan Murphy has been sub-53 in 29 races, and American Matt Grevers put up 30 sub-53 races in his career.

As for Irie, he remains atop the world rankings, slicing .06 off of the 52.94 he registered at the Japanese World Trials meet last month. We’ll see how the Americans fare today in Greensboro, as the likes of Murphy, Shaine Casas, Hunter Armstrong and more will be racing the 100m back at the U.S. International Team Trials.

2021-2022 LCM Men 100 Back

51.60 WR
View Top 28»

The men’s 200m free saw mainstay Katsuo Matsumoto get it done for gold, logging an effort of 1:46.98 as the only sub-1:47 swimmer.

Joining him on the podium was Temma Watanabe, who touched in 1:47.88 while the 400m IM silver medalist from last night, Tomoru Honda, rounded out the top 3 in 1:48.03.

Just missing the podium was the youngest member of Japan’s Olympic swimming team last year, Konosuke Yanagimoto. The now-18-year-old placed 4th here in 1:48.34.

Of note, Daiya Seto raced the prelims of this 2free event, placing 12th in 1:49.28 before ultimately placing 6th in the B-final in 1:50.29.

Shogo Takeda nailed the win in the men’s 1500m free, nearly matching the same result he hit at the aforementioned Japanese World Trials.

Tonight Takeda posted a mark of 15:03.83, just .80 off of the 15:03.13 from last month, a performance which situates the 27-year-old Asian Games medalist as 15th in the world right now.

On the women’s front, after reaping gold in the women’s 50m fly last night in a season-best, comeback queen Rikako Ikee settled for bronze in tonight’s 200m free.

Ikee got to the wall in a time of 1:59.46 while it was Rio Shirai who took the gold in 1:57.52. Splitting the two was the 400m free gold medalist already here, Miyu Namba, who clocked 1:59.22.

Shirai pulled a double this evening, also taking on the women’s 100m back. She was also the gold medalist in that event, producing an effort of 1:00.01.

Additional Notes:

  • Satomi Suzuki won the women’s 50m breast in the only 30-point time of the field 30.94.
  • Yuya Hinomoto was the men’s 50m breast field leader, topping the podium in 27.56.
  • The women’s 400m IM saw Ageha Tanigawa put up the fastest performance, with her 4:38.14 not too terribly off the 4:36.45 she threw down last month to qualify for the World Championships.



In This Story

Leave a Reply

Notify of

oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
9 months ago

I could watch that guy swim a 1000 backstroke

9 months ago

Irie is the People’s Champion.

There's no doubt that he's tightening up
9 months ago

It’s a long shot for sure, especially because he seems closer to his best at the 100 rather than the 200 as he gets older, but I’m really hoping my man can manifest a 1:54 out of nowhere to get a 200 back major gold finally at Worlds.

9 months ago

Happy for Ryosuke! I want him to get a medal at the World. Go, Ryosuke!

9 months ago


9 months ago

who has the most sub 53 swims ever in the men’s 100 lcm back?

Reply to  Dan
9 months ago

What makes this statistic harder to find is that FINA does not include Mixed Medley relay lead off times

Swimmer Wilson
9 months ago

There is two differing stats about Ryan Murphy’s number of sub 53 swims

Tik Tok
9 months ago

Mr. Smooth and Consistent

Reply to  Tik Tok
9 months ago

A modern Roland Matthes

About Retta Race

Retta Race

Former Masters swimmer and coach Loretta (Retta) thrives on a non-stop but productive schedule. Nowadays, that includes having just earned her MBA while working full-time in IT while owning French 75 Boutique while also providing swimming insight for BBC.

Read More »