2020 TOKYO SUMMER OLYMPIC GAMES
- When: Pool swimming: Saturday, July 24 – Sunday, August 1, 2021
- Open Water swimming: Wednesday, August 4 – Thursday, August 5, 2021
- Where: Olympic Aquatics Centre / Tokyo, Japan
- Heats: 7 PM / Semifinals & Finals: 10:30 AM (Local time)
- Full aquatics schedule
- SwimSwam Event Previews
- Entry Lists
- Live Results
Haven’t done your homework? Cram for tonight’s Day 3 Olympic Swimming Finals with our quick-hitting session preview:
Men’s 200 Free final
The men’s 200 free looks as wide open as any race in the Olympic program this year.
British talents Duncan Scott and Tom Dean entered these Olympics ranked #1 and #2 in the world in this event. Scott bested the field out of semifinals and will claim the middle lane for tonight’s medal final. But the two will have to avenge a 2020 European Championships loss to Russia’s Martin Malyutin, who lurks out in lane 2.
Speaking of redemption, Lithuania’s Danas Rapsys has as much to avenge as anyone. Rapsys outswam the entire field at the 2019 World Championships and was set to become the first Lithuanian man to win Worlds gold in swimming – only to find out he’d been disqualified for movement on the blocks. He now has a chance to become Lithuania’s first man to win an Olympic swimming medal.
It’s a field where all eight men have a realistic chance of medaling. American Kieran Smith is the #2 seed and the bronze medalist in the 400 free already this week. Brazil’s Fernando Scheffer was the 2019 Pan Ams gold medalist in this race, and his swim from the heats here in Tokyo (1:45.05) is the second-fastest time anyone swam in heats or semifinals.
Women’s 100 Back Final
The women’s 100 back is one of the most highly-anticipated races of these entire Olympics – and the Olympics have already been a microcosm of the ferocious world record scramble we’ve seen in this event over the past few years.
In 2017, Canada’s Kylie Masse won the Worlds gold, setting the world record to 58.10. In 2018, American Kathleen Baker reset that record to 58.00, and in 2019, American Regan Smith dropped it to 57.57 on a relay at 2019 Worlds. Then just last month, Australia’s Kaylee McKeown shaved it to 57.45 at Australian Olympic Trials.
In Tokyo, the crew basically repeated their game of record keep-away. Masse won a circle-seeded heat in a new Olympic record 58.17. But Smith quickly erased that with a 57.96 win in the next heat before McKeown wiped both out with a 57.88 to win the final heat.
Not to be outdone, Smith took the record back in semifinals with a 57.86. Masse, Smith, and McKeown will do battle one final time in today’s final. Also keep an eye on Great Britain’s Kathleen Dawson, who is looking to become the fourth woman ever under 58 seconds along with the three world record battlers.
Men’s 100 Back Final
The men’s 100 back is yet another race without an odds-on favorite. American Ryan Murphy is the world record-holder and the defending Olympic champ. His goal is to continue a streak of 6 consecutive U.S. golds in the Olympic 100 back, including the gold Murphy won in 2016.
China’s Xu Jiayu is the two-time defending world champ, flying under the radar outside in lane 7.
Women’s 100 Breast Final
In contrast, the women’s 100 breast has a much more clear favorite: Lilly King is the world record-holder, defending Olympic champ and two-time defending world champ.
It would be surprising to see King lose this race – but it’s worth noting King was surprisingly… not-brash in her interviews after yesterday’s semifinals when South African Tatjana Schoenmaker bested her head-to-head by 0.33 seconds. The typically-confident King said she expected a tight race with Schoenmaker, who is swimming lights-out so far at these Olympics.
Those two will claim the middle of the pool, with 17-year-old American Lydia Jacoby and Swedish standout Sophie Hansson flanking them. Jacoby and 16-year-old Russian Evgeniia Chikunova have an outside shot to challenge the world junior record (1:04.35) with great swims.
Day 3 Semi-finals Quick Hits
- In the Women’s 200 free, we’ll get a rematch of the show-stopping 400 free final between Australia’s Ariarne Titmus and the United States’ Katie Ledecky. Titmus will swim the early semifinal, hoping to better her blazing 1:53.0 from Australian Olympic Trials and perhaps challenge a super-suited world record. She lines up against Canadian standout Penny Oleksiak in that heat, with Hong Kong’s Siobhan Haughey another top threat.
- Ledecky will go next, leading a slightly-less-loaded second semifinal against Australia’s Madison Wilson.
- In the Men’s 200 fly, keep a close eye on world record-holder Kristof Milak, who was head and shoulders head of the rest of the field in heats, though Japan’s Daiya Seto (sharing the same semifinal) should be a breakout threat from an outside lane.
- In the women’s 200 IM, world record-holder Katinka Hosszu battles world junior record-holder Yu Yiting with American Alex Walsh right in the middle of one semi that also includes 400 IM champ Yui Ohashi of Japan. In the second semi, top-qualifying Kate Douglass of the United States looks to hold onto her top spot against Great Britain’s Abbie Wood.