Japan’s 2022 World Championship roster is sprint-free

The Japan Swimming Federation (JASF) has revealed its roster of 17 for the 2022 FINA World Championships and a few curveballs have been revealed along with the roster.

Although the pillars at extraordinary backstroking height Ryōsuke Irie and IM World Champion Daia Seto makes the cut, there are glaring absences from the selected swimmers, for both men and women.

For men, Shoma Satowho holds three of the top ten performances in the men’s 200m breaststroke of all time in the world, is a notable name who missed out on Budapest based on his performance in Tokyo last weekend.

In his signature event, 21-year-old Sato placed 3rd with a time of 2:08.26, while Yu Hanaguruma and Ryūya Mura qualified before him.

Another head-turning absence is that of the two sprint veterans Shinri Shioura and Katsumi Nakamuraneither was able to squeeze through the time standards imposed by the JASF to book a ticket to Budapest.

Shioura won the men’s 50 freestyle in 21.91 while Nakamura topped the 100 freestyle podium in 48.57, which was a solid effort, but not enough to engrave their name on the formation.

The fact that there are no sprinters bound for Budapest is a step in the wrong direction for a country that was once on track to field a handful of speedsters. In fact, in 2019 it was Shioura himself who became the first Japanese 50m freestyle finalist at the World Championships since 2001.

For women survivors of leukemia Rikako Ikee lacks, which is also due to the sprinter not being able to meet the strict Japanese qualification standards in the individual free flight events.

She reached the minimum time standard for the 100m freestyle medley relay, however, swimmers from other disciplines failed, so no relay will go to Budapest.

The only qualified relay is the women’s 4x200m freestyle, with Miyu Namba, Waka KoboriAoi Masuda and Momoka Yoshi combining to enter the event in Budapest.

Note, 15 years old Mio Narita who set a temporary junior world record in the women’s 400m individual medley has seen her place in this event replaced by the Olympic champion Yui Ohashi.

It was Ageha Tanigawa who actually topped the 4IM podium, with Narita in second place and Ohashi in third. However, with Ohashi gold in Tokyo, she earned the spot on the Worlds roster.

Japanese line-up for the 2022 FINA World Championships

Katsuhiro Matsumoto

Ryōsuke Irie

Ryūya Mura

Yu Hanaguruma

Naoki Mizunuma

Tomoru Honda

Takumi Terada

Daia Seto

Miyu Namba

Waka Kobori

Reona Aoki

Hayashi Kina

Chiho Mizuguchi

Rika Omoto

Ageha Tanigawa

Yui Ohashi

Relay – Aoi Masuda, Momoka Yoshi