After a year of adversity, Japan’s top backstroke swimmer Ryosuke Irie is back in the spotlight, trying to once again be one of the world’s best.

After his 200-meter backstroke race at the Japan Open on Sunday at Tokyo Tatsumi International Pool, Irie, who won with a time of 1 minutes, 54.63 seconds, said that he wanted to notch an even faster time. But despite his words, Irie wore a slight smile on his face, indicating that he felt satisfied with his performance.

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