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Swimming at the 2000 Sydney Summer Games:

Men's 100 metres Freestyle

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Host City: Sydney, Australia
Venue(s): Sydney International Aquatic Centre, Olympic Park, Sydney, New South Wales
Date Started: September 19, 2000
Date Finished: September 20, 2000

Gold: NED Pieter van den Hoogenband
Silver: RUS Aleksandr Popov
Bronze: USA Gary Hall, Jr.


Held right in the middle of the Olympic swimming programme this race had a perfect cast list.

There was [Aleksandr Popov] of Russia, the defending champion returning from a life threatening injury, American [Gary Hall, Jr.], cast as the brash anti-hero in the eyes of the Australian fans, [Pieter van den Hoogenband], the rising star from Holland who had already won the 200 metres freestyle, and, last but not least, [Michael Klim], the Australian hoping to win on home soil.

Klim had already put his marker down by setting a world record in the first leg of the 4 x 100 freestyle relay. This record lasted all of six days until van den Hoogenband took a third of a second off it in the semi-finals. The Dutchman did not match his semi-final time in the final but still finished well clear of everyone else with Popov, Hall and Klim finishing in that order behind him separated by just 0.05 seconds.

Worthy as van den Hoogenband’s efforts were they garnered less worldwide publicity then the events of qualifying heat one. Three men attempted to start the race but two false started leaving [Eric Moussambani] of Equatorial Guinea as the only man left. He started well enough but it soon became apparent that he was tiring badly over the third quarter of the race and near the end he was struggling so badly that it looked as if he may have to be rescued from the pool. He did eventually reach the finish but only in a time of 1:52.72. which was over a minute down on most of the field and would not have been enough to qualify from the heats of the 200 metres. For a brief moment Moussambani, nicknamed “Eric the Eel” by the media, became the most famous swimmer in the world.

View a Phase of this EventFinal StandingsFinalSemi-FinalsRound One

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal
1 Pieter van den Hoogenband 22 Netherlands NED Gold
2 Aleksandr Popov 28 Russia RUS Silver
3 Gary Hall, Jr. 25 United States USA Bronze
4 Michael Klim 23 Australia AUS
5 Neil Walker 24 United States USA
6 Lars Frölander 26 Sweden SWE
7 Denis Pimankov 25 Russia RUS
8 Chris Fydler 27 Australia AUS
9 Attila Zubor 25 Hungary HUN
10 José Martín Meolans 22 Argentina ARG
11 Duje Draganja 17 Croatia CRO
12 Lorenzo Vismara 25 Italy ITA
13 Salim Iles 25 Algeria ALG
14 Christian Tröger 30 Germany GER
15 Roland Schoeman 20 South Africa RSA
16 Gustavo Borges 27 Brazil BRA
17 Bartosz Kizierowski 23 Poland POL
18 Johan Kenkhuis 20 Netherlands NED
19T Karel Novy 20 Switzerland SUI
19T Stefan Nystrand 18 Sweden SWE
21 Peter Mankoč 22 Slovenia SLO
22 Romain Barnier 24 France FRA
23 Rolandas Gimbutis 19 Lithuania LTU
24 Kim Min-Seok 21 South Korea KOR
25 Torsten Spanneberg 25 Germany GER
26 Yannick Lupien 20 Canada CAN
27 Pavlo Khnykin 31 Ukraine UKR
28 Javier Botello 21 Spain ESP
29 Craig Hutchison 25 Canada CAN
30 Marcos Hernández 21 Cuba CUB
31 Oleg Rykhlevich 26 Belarus BLR
32 Thierry Wouters 21 Belgium BEL
33 Jere Hård 21 Finland FIN
34T Sergey Ashikhmin 23 Kyrgyzstan KGZ
34T Spyros Bitsakis 19 Greece GRE
36 Carl Probert 25 Fiji FIJ
37 Richard Sam Bera 28 Indonesia INA
38 Yoav Bruck 28 Israel ISR
39 Nikola Kalabić 21 Serbia and Montenegro SCG
40T Christopher Murray 21 Bahamas BAH
40T Allen Ong 20 Malaysia MAS
42 George Gleason 21 United States Virgin Islands ISV
43 Indrek Sei 28 Estonia EST
44 Tamer Zinhom 26 Egypt EGY
45 Květoslav Svoboda 18 Czech Republic CZE
46 Paul Kutscher 23 Uruguay URU
47T Fernando Jácome 20 Colombia COL
47T Mark Chay 18 Singapore SIN
49 Željko Panić 24 Bosnia and Herzegovina BIH
50 Francisco Sánchez 24 Venezuela VEN
51 Howard Hinds 22 Netherlands Antilles AHO
52 Glen Walshaw 24 Zimbabwe ZIM
53 Igor Sitnikov 21 Kazakhstan KAZ
54 Aleksandr Agafonov 25 Uzbekistan UZB
55 Wu Nien-Pin 17 Chinese Taipei TPE
56 Felipe Delgado 27 Ecuador ECU
57 Khrysanthos Papakhrysanthou 21 Cyprus CYP
58 Ríkarður Ríkarðsson 22 Iceland ISL
59 George Bovell 17 Trinidad and Tobago TTO
60 Gentle Offoin 27 Nigeria NGR
61 Kenny Roberts 22 Seychelles SEY
62 Rodrigo Olivares 24 Chile CHI
63 Gregory Arkhurst 24 Cote d'Ivoire CIV
64 Alejandro Castellanos 21 Honduras HON
65 Hamid Reza Mobarez 19 Iran IRI
66 Christophe Lim 18 Mauritius MRI
67 Ganaagiin Galbadrakh 26 Mongolia MGL
68 Ragi Edde 15 Lebanon LIB
69 Marien Michel Ngouabi 20 Congo (Brazzaville) CGO
70 Dawood Youssef 15 Bahrain BRN
71 Éric Moussambani 22 Equatorial Guinea GEQ
AC r1/2 Karim Bare 16 Niger NIG DQ
AC r1/2 Farhod Oripov 16 Tajikistan TJK DQ