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Swimming at the 2008 Beijing Summer Games:

Men's 100 metres Breaststroke

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Host City: Beijing, China
Venue(s): Beijing National Aquatics Centre, Beijing Olympic Green, Beijing
Date Started: August 9, 2008
Date Finished: August 11, 2008

Gold: JPN Kosuke Kitajima
Silver: NOR Alexander Dale Oen
Bronze: FRA Hugues Duboscq

Summary

Between the two Olympic Games of 2004 and 2008 breaststroke swimming had turned into a personal duel between the man who had won both Olympic titles in Athens, Kosuke Kitajima of Japan, and America's Brendan Hansen, who had beaten Kitajima in all their recent major championship clashes.\n\nBut before the competition started Kitajima became embroiled in a swimsuit controversy. Japanese swimming federation rules allowed swimsuits made by Japanese manufacturers to be used by the national team but team members were adamant that not using the new Speedo costumes would ruin their chances in Beijing. Some, including Kitajima, threatened to break ranks and wear the American-made costumes in defiance of the rules. The Japanese federation was forced to back down and allow the swimmers to use the new high tech suits.\n\nKitajima signaled his intentions by breaking the world record in a warm-up meet in June and was a clear favourite for the Olympic title on arrival in Beijing. His main rival proved not to be Hansen, who was not in the same form as previous years, but instead it was European champion Alexander Dale Oen of Norway. The Norwegian broke the Olympic record in both his heat and semi-final but the Japanese champion responded by breaking his own world record in the final to retain the Olympic final.

Dale Oen went on to win the World title in 2011 but his life came to a tragic end in May 2012. Shortly after training at altitude in Arizona he was discovered unconscious in his apartment shower, having suffered a cardiac arrest. Efforts to revive him proved fruitless and he passed away in Flagstaff Medical Centre.

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal
1 Kosuke Kitajima 25 Japan JPN Gold WR
2 Alexander Dale Oen 23 Norway NOR Silver
3 Hugues Duboscq 26 France FRA Bronze
4 Brendan Hansen 26 United States USA
5 Brenton Rickard 24 Australia AUS
6 Roman Sludnov 28 Russia RUS
7 Ihor Borysyk 24 Ukraine UKR
8 Mark Gangloff 26 United States USA
9 Oleh Lisohor 29 Ukraine UKR
10 Cameron van der Burgh 20 South Africa RSA
11 Mikhail Aleksandrov 23 Bulgaria BUL
12 Giedrius Titenis 19 Lithuania LTU
13 Yuta Suenaga 23 Japan JPN
14 Christian Sprenger 22 Australia AUS
15 Chris Cook 29 Great Britain GBR
16 Damir Dugonjič 20 Slovenia SLO
17 Vlad Polyakov 24 Kazakhstan KAZ
18 Hunor Mate 25 Austria AUT
19 Richárd Bodor 29 Hungary HUN
20T Mike Brown 24 Canada CAN
20T Glenn Snyders 21 New Zealand NZL
22 Felipe França Silva 21 Brazil BRA
23 Henrique Barbosa 24 Brazil BRA
24T Matjaž Markič 25 Slovenia SLO
24T Dániel Gyurta 19 Hungary HUN
26 Thijs van Valkengoed 25 Netherlands NED
27 Kris Gilchrist 24 Great Britain GBR
28 Mathieu Bois 20 Canada CAN
29 Jiří Jedlička 21 Czech Republic CZE
30 Andrew Bree 27 Ireland IRL
31T Valentin Preda 23 Romania ROU
31T Jonas Andersson 24 Sweden SWE
33 Daniel Velez 24 Puerto Rico PUR
34 Dmitry Komornikov 27 Russia RUS
35T Yevgeny Ryzhkov 23 Kazakhstan KAZ
35T Borja Iradier 28 Spain ESP
37 Melquíades Álvarez 19 Spain ESP
38 Sandeep Sejwal 19 India IND
39 Demir Atasoy 21 Turkey TUR
40 Čaba Silađi 17 Serbia SRB
41 Genaro Prono 19 Paraguay PAR
42T Tom Be'eri 22 Israel ISR
42T Vanja Rogulj 26 Croatia CRO
44 Sofiane Daid 25 Algeria ALG
45 Martti Aljand 20 Estonia EST
46 Xue Ruipeng 20 China CHN
47 Jakob Sveinsson 25 Iceland ISL
48 Malick Fall 22 Senegal SEN
49 Viktor Vabishchevich 19 Belarus BLR
50 Romanos Alyfantis 22 Greece GRE
51 Alwin de Prins 29 Luxembourg LUX
52 Sergio Ferreyra 31 Argentina ARG
53 Edgar Crespo 19 Panama PAN
54 Sergiu Postică 23 Moldova MDA
55 Andrei Cross 24 Barbados BAR
56 Ivan Demyanenko 19 Uzbekistan UZB
57 Wael Koubrousli 20 Lebanon LIB
58 Nguyễn Hữu Việt 19 Vietnam VIE
59 Erik Rajohnson 23 Madagascar MAD
60 Boldbaataryn Butekh-Uils 18 Mongolia MGL
61 Osama Alarag 16 Qatar QAT
62 Mohammed Al-Habsi 16 Oman OMA
63 Petero Okotai 27 Cook Islands COK
AC Alessandro Terrin 23 Italy ITA