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Swimming at the 2004 Athina Summer Games:

Women's 200 metres Backstroke

Swimming at the 2004 Summer Games: Previous Summer Games ▪ Next Summer Games


Host City: Athina, Greece
Venue(s): Olympic Aquatic Centre, Athens Olympic Sports Complex Spiros Loues, Athina
Date Started: August 19, 2004
Date Finished: August 20, 2004

Gold: ZIM Kirsty Coventry
Silver: RUS Stanislava Komarova
Bronze: GER Antje Buschschulte
JPN Reiko Nakamura


The longer of the two backstroke events did not have a clear favourite in Athens. Russia's [Stanislava Komarova] was generally accepted to be the most talented in the race for gold but could be frustratingly inconsistent at the highest level. The 2003 World Champion and world leader for 2004 was [Katy Sexton] but the British team of which she was a part had endured a poor time at the Games.

Few would have considered Zimbabwe's [Kirsty Coventry] a medal favourite before the Games began but the American-based swimmer had already won a silver and a bronze and this event was potentially a stronger one for her. Coventry took the lead from the first few strokes and left Komarova trailing in her wake to claim Zimbabwe's first individual Olympic gold and the first by any African swimmer from outside South Africa. Komarova held on for silver with [Reiko Nakamura] of Japan and Germany's [Antje Buschschulte] finishing in a dead heat for third.

Coventry's win came at the time when racial tensions in Zimbabwe were at a peak and, for a short time at least, brought the troubled country some measure of joy.

View a Phase of this EventFinal StandingsFinalSemi-FinalsRound One

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal
1 Kirsty Coventry 20 Zimbabwe ZIM Gold
2 Stanislava Komarova 18 Russia RUS Silver
3T Reiko Nakamura 22 Japan JPN Bronze
3T Antje Buschschulte 25 Germany GER Bronze
5 Margaret Hoelzer 21 United States USA
6 Louise Ørnstedt 19 Denmark DEN
7 Katy Sexton 22 Great Britain GBR
8 Aya Terakawa 19 Japan JPN
9 Jennifer Fratesi 20 Canada CAN
10 Hannah McLean 23 New Zealand NZL
11 Nicole Hetzer 25 Germany GER
12 Melissa Morgan 19 Australia AUS
13 Sanja Jovanović 17 Croatia CRO
14 Evelyn Verrasztó 15 Hungary HUN
15 Iryna Amshennikova 18 Ukraine UKR
16 Frances Adcock 20 Australia AUS
17 Kristen Caverly 19 United States USA
18 Elizabeth Warden 26 Canada CAN
19 Kateřina Pivoňková 25 Czech Republic CZE
20 Karen Lee 21 Great Britain GBR
21T Alessia Filippi 17 Italy ITA
21T Şadan Derya Erke 20 Turkey TUR
23 Anja Čarman 19 Slovenia SLO
24 Lin Man-Hsu 15 Chinese Taipei TPE
25 Lee Da-Hye 17 South Korea KOR
26 Gisela Morales 16 Guatemala GUA
27 Alexandra Putra 17 France FRA
28 Sherry Tsai 20 Hong Kong HKG
29 Chonlathorn Vorathamrong 23 Thailand THA
30 Eirini Karastergiou 21 Greece GRE
31 Gretchen Gotay 23 Puerto Rico PUR
32 Saida Iskandarova 24 Uzbekistan UZB
33 Zhan Shu 19 China CHN
AC r1/3 Chen Xiujun 18 China CHN DQ