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Glorious Games
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  • Su Bingtian of China celebrates after winning the men's 100-meter final on August 26
  • The Hangzhou Time performance is staged during the closing ceremony at the Gelora Bung Karno Main Stadium on September 2
  • Zhu Ting (center) of China competes during the women's volleyball final between China and Thailand on September 1
  • The esports event, Arena of Valor, between China and Thailand takes place on August 26
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  • 0902AX17_038508.jpg
  • 0901AZ25_038507.jpg
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The 18th Asian Games came to a successful finish with a colorful closing ceremony at the Gelora Bung Karno Main Stadium in Jakarta, Indonesia, on September 2. It brought down the curtain on the 16-day international sporting event which began on August 18, and was marked by athletes realizing their potential and surpassing their limits.

It was the second time Jakarta hosted the event and was a great illustration of the "Energy of Asia," resulting in five Asian records being broken. Chinese swimmer, Liu Xiang, set a new world record in the women's 50-meter backstroke, while Japanese swimmer, Rikako Ikee, was named the Asian Games' Most Valuable Player, as she became the first athlete to win six gold medals at the event.

China dominated the medal table at the 40-sport event for the 10th time, with 132 gold, 92 silver and 65 bronze medals, followed by Japan and South Korea. As the host of 18th Asian Games, Indonesia ranked fourth among the 45 participating countries and regions.

China achieved outstanding results in the sports its athletes traditionally dominate, such as table tennis and diving. Results in other sports that held potential, like synchronized swimming, were also remarkable.

In the three Big Ball sports, the Chinese basketball teams swept the gold medals in both the men's and women's competitions; the Chinese women's football team had its best result in the past 10 years with a silver medal; and the Chinese women's volleyball team kept their edge and won the gold medal.

Esports was introduced for the first time at the 18th Asian Games as a demonstration event and will be developed into a formal one for the next Games. Chinese athletes won the first esports gold medal in the history of the Asian Games.

China's delegation of 845 athletes had an average age of 24.4. Seventeen of them were Olympic champions, while 70 percent of them had no experience at either the Asian Games or the Olympics.

According to the delegation's Secretary General Liu Guoyong, the 2018 Asian Games helped athletes gain experience and get a feel for major international sporting events. At the same time, they were able to gauge their preparedness for the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics as a mid-term test.

The flag handover event at the closing ceremony marked the Asian Games entering into Hangzhou time, when Xu Liyi, Mayor of Hangzhou, east China's Zhejiang Province, received the flag from the Olympic Council of Asia. Artists and Hangzhou citizen representatives staged a marvelous performance featuring the profound history and distinctive culture of Hangzhou, welcoming friends from all over the world.

In 2022, Hangzhou will be the third Chinese city to host the Asian Games, after Beijing in 1990 and Guangzhou in 2010.

(Photos by Xinhua News Agency) 

Copyedited by Rebeca Toledo  

Comments to liqing@bjreview.com 

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