The Asian Games have been won by Japan with China producing its best ever international performance gaining second place.
The Asian Games have been won by Japan with China producing its best ever international performance gaining second place. The Games started with the exclusion of Israel from track and field events, and ended with a threat by the International Amateur Athletics Federation that any athletes competing at the Games could be barred from the 1980 Olympics.
SYNOPSIS: Twenty seven countries competed during the twelve days of competition in Bangkok. Asian Games records were smashed in almost every sport, especially in swimming, shooting and in the track events.
The winning Japanese team amassed seventy gold, sixty silver and forty-seven bronze medals. They dominated the swimming, but were beaten by the Chinese in track and field. The Saudi Arabians did not do so well. Without the financial support of the competing Arab countries however, the Games could have cost the host country, Thailand several million dollars.
For the Chinese the Games were very successful and their fifty-one gold medals indicate that Japan's position as the top sporting nation in Asia is now threatened.
World records are a rarity at Asian Games but a sixteen-year-old Chinese high diver, Chen Hsiao-hsia produced the most stunning individual performance at the Games to smash the world record. However because China is not a member of the International amateur Swimming Federation, her performance was not recognised. It now seems possible that China may be allowed to compete in the 1980 Olympics Games in Moscow.
The threat by the International Amateur Athletics Federation to bar any track and field athletes competing in the Games from further international competition failed to disrupt the Games. But the Asian Games Federation has now threatened a boycott of the Moscow Olympics if any Asian athletes is barred from the competition. The dispute could be resolved at talks in London in January.