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Athletes

Yasunari
Hirai
JapanJapan, JPN
Open water

Biography

Further Personal Information

Date of birth
02 April 1990
Height
175 cm
Residence
Tokyo, JPN
Occupation
Athlete, Office Worker
Languages
English, Japanese
Higher education
Economics, Political Studies - Meiji University: Tokyo, JPN

Sport Specific Information

When and where did you begin this sport?
He took up open water swimming in 2009.
Why this sport?
He was a freestyle swimmer but wanted to compete at international level. "I started doing open water because I wanted to leave my name in the history books."
Club / Team
SBI Holdings [JPN] / Watanabe Entertainment [JPN]:
Name of coach
Yumiko Kuze, JPN

International Debut

Year
2010
Competing for
Japan
Tournament
World Cup
Location
China

General Interest

Hobbies
Photography. (yasunarihirai.jp, 29 Jan 2018)
Hero / Idol
Japanese alpine skier Akira Sasaki, Japanese snowboarder Kazuhiro Kokubo, Japanese mixed martial artists Norifumi Yamamoto and Shinya Aoki, Japanese swimmer Takeshi Matsuda, Japanese footballers Hidetoshi Nakata and Keisuke Honda, Australian swimmer Ky Hurst, Australian triathlete Courtney Atkinson. (dailynews.openwaterswimming.com, 29 Mar 2015; yasunarihirai.jp, 29 Jan 2018)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"Carry out one's word." (yasunarihirai.jp, 29 Jan 2018)
Awards and honours
He was given an Excellence Award at the 2016 Japan Aquatics Awards. (tobiuojapan.org, 30 Jan 2017)

In 2013 he received an Excellence Award from Chiba Prefecture in Japan. (pref.chiba.lg.jp, 11 Oct 2013)
Other sports
He represented Japan in swimming at the 2016 World Cup Short Course event in Berlin, Germany. (SportsDeskOnline, 11 Aug 2017)
Ambitions
To win a gold medal at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. (life-rhythm.net, 29 May 2018)
Other information
NATIONAL FIRST
He became the first Japanese male athlete to compete in open water swimming at the Olympic Games when he took part in the 10km event at the 2012 Games in London. (sports-reference.com, 10 Aug 2012; SportsDeskOnline, 04 Jun 2018)