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Kitajima to swim at Pan Pacific meet

Kyodo News

Two-time double Olympic breaststroke champion Kosuke Kitajima was named to compete at the Pan Pacific Swimming Championships in Irvine, Calif., in August as the Japan Swimming Federation announced the Japan team on Monday.

Kitajima will represent Japan for the first time since the Beijing Olympics at the Aug. 18-22 meet, which doubles as the final qualifier for the Asian Games in Guangzhou in November.

“I’m relieved to be back in position to represent Japan,” Kitajima said. “Right now I’m not at the level to compete against top swimmers in the world. I have time so I hope to get stronger to be more competitive.”

Reigning 100-meter world backstroke champion Junya Koga and Ryosuke Irie were also among 49 men and women picked.