BUSAN, SOUTH KOREA, Oct. 5 — China concluded a dominant performance in the 14th Asian Games that concluded here this evening at the Sajik Swimming Pool
with a four-gold finale.
The host nation for the 2008 Olympiad showed once again that, in swimming at least, it is the dominant power in its region.
China and Japan both had reason to claim medal supremacy. Chinese swimmers won a whopping 20 golds overall and 39 medals in total. Japan finished with 11 golds, but won the most overall medals, 42. The following is the final medals table:
Gold Silver Bronze Total
CHN 20 11 8 39
JPN 11 18 13 42
KOR 1 2 8 11
UZB 1 0 0 1
MAS 0 1 0 1
THA 0 0 1 1
SIN 0 0 1 1
(Note: There were ties for first and second)
China's Wu Peng and Qi Hui each won a third individual gold this evening while teammate Chen Hua splashed to her first — but what a first it was — a national/
Games/Asian Record in the 800 free (8:25.36).
Her time ranks her second globally for the year to Germany's European Champion Jana Henke's 8:23.83, which won gold at Berlin.
The old Asian record was 8:26.48 by China's Zhang Liang from last year's 9th National Games in Guangzhou, a meet where Chen was runner-up in a then pr 8:26.54.
Japan's Sachiko Yamada, runaway winner in the 400 free, went a pr-NR 8:28.77 for the silver, slicing some three seconds off her old pr-NR of 8:31.29 from
the Pan-Pacs. She also led the world in the 800 free (short course meters) this year with her world record 8:14+ from the Japanese Championships in early April.
In the 400 IM, Hui, world record-holder in the 200 breast, scored her third win to go along with golds in the 200 IM and 200 breast with a 4:40.37 clocking. That time is her pr, ranks her third globally and is just off the Games' record of 4:39.88 by Lin Li from
'90 in Shanghai.
Japan's Maiko Fujino, a Pan Pac finalist who swam a pr 4:45.79 there, cut her career-best to 4:43.49 tonight and won the silver. China's Zhou Yafei, 100 fly champ with a pr 58.88, was third (4:47.09).
China won the concluding women's race, the 400 medley relay, with a 4:00.21 effort to Japan's second-place 4:06.75
* * * * *
On the men's side, 15-year-old Wu Peng added gold in the 200 back to his No. 1s in the 200 fly-400 IM with a nice 2:00.40 effort — 21st globally. Second and third were Japan's Takashi Nakano (2:00.78) and Nayoya Sonoda (2:01.22).
Nakano's pr is 1:59.74, swum at the Pan Pac Trials in Tokyo last June. Sonoda's career-best is 2:00.78 from that same meet. The Japanese record is 1:59.49 by Hajime Ito from the '92 Olympic Trials.
Wu's next goal will be the Asian/Chinese record of 1:58.72 by Yong Fu from the 8th National Games five years ago.
The final men's race saw the home country score its first victory as sprinter Min Suk Kim tied Uzbekistan's Ravil Nachev in a thrilling 50
free, at 22.86. It was the only event here not won by a Chinese or Japanese athlete. Japan's Issei Nakanishi (23.14) took home the bronze.
Kim's pr-NR is a 22.82 from the Sydney prelims and Nachev's old pr-NR was a 22.95 from last summer's World Championships.
* * * * *
The biggest surprise of these Games was the emergence of 15-year-old Wu Peng as his country's first real world-class male swimmer in a long time and the first with a legitimate shot at a major international medal in the years to come.
Teammate Qi Hui continues her ascent into the ranks of the world's elite individual medleyists and she's imrproved her 100 breast too. She, of course,
already holds the global standard in the 200 breast.
Chen Hua and Sachiko Yamada are definitely world-class in the distance events and Zhou Yafei (58.88 to win the 100 fly) has moved into the sport's upper ranks, as has Malaysian backstroker Alex Lim. However, Lim's races are among the most competitive on the internatioanl program and with 100 dorsal world record-holder, Lednny Krayzelburg, almsot fully recovered from shoulder surgery last year, Lim has his work cut out for him in the next few years.
– Bill Bell
14th Asian Games
Busan, South Korea
September 29 – October 14, 2002
DAY SIX: October 5, 2002
Women's 800m Freestyle
1 4 CHEN Hua People's Rep. of China
8:25.36 Asian Record
2 5 YAMADA Sachiko Japan
3 3 ZHANG Yan People's Rep. of China
4 6 OCHI Madoka Japan
5 1 KIM Mi Ryung Korea
6 2 TACHAKITTIRANAN Pilin Thailand
7 7 SIA Wai Yen Malaysia
8 1 4 CHO A Rum Korea
Women's 400m Individual Medley
1 6 QI Hui People's Rep. of China
2 4 FUJINO Maiko Japan
3 7 ZHOU Ya Fei People's Rep. of China
4 3 NAM Yoo Sun Korea
5 2 SATO Ayane Japan
6 5 LEE Sun A Korea
7 1 SIA Wai Yen Malaysia
8 8 CHAN Wing Suet Hong Kong, China
Women's 4 x 100m Medley Relay
F 1 4 People's Rep. of China
ZHOU Ya Fei
2 5 Japan
3 3 Korea
SHIM Min Ji
KU Hyo Jin
PARK Kyung Wha
SUN So Eun
4 6 Hong Kong, China
TSAI Hiu Wai Sherry
LIU Ka Lei
KONG Yan Kay Flora
TANG Hing Ting
5 2 Thailand
6 1 Philippines
ONG Heidi Gem
7 7 Pakistan
ABDUL WAHID Sana
Men's 50m Freestyle
A 1 4 KIM Min Suk Korea
1 5 NACHAEV Ravil Uzbekistan
3 3 NAKANISHI Issei Japan
4 7 Richard Sam Bera Indonesia
5 6 NAGURA Naoki Japan
6 2 LEE Chung Hee Korea
7 8 SITNIKOV Igor Kazakhstan
8 1 ONG Hou Meng Malaysia
B 1 3 CHINNAPASAEN Arwut Thailand
2 7 TANG Wen Jun People's Rep. of China
3 2 FU Wing Harbeth Hong Kong, China
4 5 JIN Hao People's Rep. of China
5 8 WU Nien Pin Chinese Taipei
6 1 WANG Shao An Chinese Taipei
7 4 KORSHUNOV Maksim Tajikistan
8 6 KVASSOV Andrey Kazakhstan
Men's 200m Backstroke
F 1 6 WU Peng People's Rep. of China
2 4 NAKANO Takashi Japan
3 5 SONODA Naoya Japan
4 7 YU Rui People's Rep. of China
5 2 LIM Keng Liat Malaysia
6 3 SUNG Min Korea
7 8 KOH Mun Yew Gerald Singapore
8 1 FAI Yau Sun Dickson Hong Kong, China