First Woman Asian Games MVP; More Asian Olympic Bids Welcome

(ATR) Japanese swimmer takes home top competitor prize as last medals awarded on final day of Asian Games.


(ATR) Japanese swimmer takes home top competitor prize...Olympic "light" heading to Asia...Team Japan wins mixed triathlon event...

Rikako Ikee won the Jakarta 2018 Asian Games Most Valuable Player award.

She will take home the prize in addition to her six gold medals and two bronze. Her gold medal haul is an Asian Games record.

Ikee, 19, also earned a $50,000 check from Olympic Council of Asia

Speaking to reporters, Ikee said she was "shocked" when she heard the news. With the swimming competition long concluded, Ikee said she had returned to Japan and didn’t expect to return to Indonesia.

Ikee is also the first woman to win the Asian Games MVP title, first awarded at the 1998 Asian Games.

OCA Director General Thrilled with Asian Bids

Husain al-Musallam, Director General of the OCA, says Asia is prepared to continue having the Olympic "light" shining on the continent.

At a press conference on Sept. 2, al-Musallam says even with Indonesia and India expressing interest in bidding for the 2032 Olympics, the OCA would welcome more Asian bids.

"Of course," he said when asked if the OCA wants any more Asian countries to bid.

"That shows that Asia truly wants to be a positive part of the world to develop sport."

He added: "Asia is willing to work with anyone to reach our goal of peace and friendship."

Final Jakarta 2018 Competition

For the third time in a row, Japan won every triathlon event at the Asian Games.

Team triathlon was the only sport contested on September 2, the last day of the Games with Team Japan claiming gold, South Korea winning silver and Hong Kong finishing third.

2006, when triathlon made it’s Asian Games debut, is the only Games where Japan didn’t win a gold. Japan’s women won a silver and bronze for its only triathlon medals.

Profitless Games Possible for Jakarta

Erick Thohir, chairman of the Jakarta 2018 Asian Games, said it’s possible the Games won’t be profitable.

"The Asian Games is not a matter of business," he said. "It’s a matter of how Indonesian people become one society.

"What we believe is Indonesia have a bright future. In the short term it’s an investment. Long term we will recoup it through tourism.

Indonesia’s government spent a reported $330 million on the Games.

Written and reported byEdward Hula IIIin Jakarta

Coverage of the 18th Asian Games is made possible in part by the Olympic Council of Asia

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