Not easy to face the man who rocked the Olympic ranks with a 57.13 for the performance in the pool at the Rio Games last year. Just ask China’s Yan Zibei. On the opening morning at the Japan Open in Tokyo, the Chinese champion clocked 59.29 in the 100m breaststroke for a ticket to lane 4 next to Britain’s Adam Peaty, on 59.6. The British world record holder left nothing to chance in the final: out in 27.59, back in 58.82, Peaty kept Yan Zibei at bay there and back, the Chinese challenger on 27.88 out, back for second place in 59.57 as Japan’s world 200m record holder, Ippei Watanabe, battled back from 28.34 at the turn for third place in 59.80.
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