• Kyodo

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Japan’s Tomomi Morita marked his Olympic debut in style by winning the bronze medal in the men’s 100-meter backstroke final at the Athens Games on Monday.

The 19-year-old Morita touched the wall in 54.36 seconds to rewrite the national record of 54.40 he set in April this year, finishing behind American Aaron Peirsol (54.06) and Markus Rogan of Austria (54.35).

“I knew the crunch would be down the final 10 meters of the race, but I didn’t panic and just kept going,” Morita said. “My time was not that great and I think I can swim faster than this.”

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