Host City: Athina, Greece
Venue(s): Olympic Aquatic Centre, Athens Olympic Sports Complex Spiros Loues, Athina
Date Started: August 17, 2004
Date Finished: August 18, 2004
Japan's [Kosuke Kitajima] had won both breaststroke titles at the 2003 World Championship and would have arrived in Athens as a clear favourite if America's [Brendan Hansen] had not broken Kitajima's world records a month earlier at the US Olympic trials. By the time of the 200 metres however, the Japanese had re-established the status quo by winning Olympic gold over the shorter breaststroke event. The Japanese swimmer was close to his best in Athens whilst Hansen was unable to repeat his performances of just a few weeks earlier and won the championship by over a second from Hungary's 15-year-old [DÃ¡niel Gyurta] who edged out Hansen for the silver medal.
In 2008 Kitajima became the first man in 80 years to successfully defend his Olympic title in this event.