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(Asiad) World records fall by wayside at Asian Games

2014/10/05 08:00

By Kim You Jin

INCHEON, Oct. 5 (Yonhap) -- Watching athletes nail a gold medal is plenty exhilarating; watching them do so while breaking world records is even more so. And those who attended the Incheon Asian Games saw that happen many times.

The 17th Asian Games saw 14 world records shattered by its participating athletes in the western port city of Incheon.

More than half of the new world records were set by weightlifters, who outlifted nine of the previous figures set in the sport.

North Korean weightlifter Om Yun-chul pumps his fist after setting a world record in the men's 56-kilogram clean and jerk during the Asian Games on Sept. 20, 2014. (Yonhap file photo) North Korean weightlifter Om Yun-chul pumps his fist after setting a world record in the men's 56-kilogram clean and jerk during the Asian Games on Sept. 20, 2014. (Yonhap file photo)

North Korean star weightlifter Kim Un-guk hoisted more than twice his own weight by lifting up 154kg in the snatch in the men's 62kg class, and proceeded to break another world record later when his combined weights in the snatch and the clean and jerk shot up to 332kg.

Two more world records were also logged by other weightlifting champs from the reclusive country, while the remaining five were all set by female lifters, including China's Zhou Lulu and Chinese Taipei's Lin Tzu Chi.

Four world records were rewritten in the shooting disciplines, with teams from China scoring the highest-ever points in the men's 50-meter rifle prone, women's 10m air rifle and in the women's team double trap. South Korean shooter Kim Mi-jin scored 110 points in the women's individual double trap to be named the world's best shooter in the discipline.

Archers also flaunted record-breaking performances during the 16-day competition.

The trio of Seok Ji-hyun, Choi Bo-min and Kim Yun-hee from the host country, long known for its dominance in the sport, earned a combined 238 points in the compound women's team event and emerged as the new world record holders.

By country, North Korea and China took the lead after their athletes rewrote four world records each. They were followed by Chinese Taipei with three, and then by South Korea and Kazakhstan with two and one, respectively.

Athletes at the Asiad also topped the Asian records during their athletic bouts, and even excluding those in the world record category, the number came to 14 in total.

Japanese swimmer Kosuke Hagino swims during the men's 200-meter freestyle heat at the Incheon Asian Games on Sept. 21, 2014. (Yonhap file photo) Japanese swimmer Kosuke Hagino swims during the men's 200-meter freestyle heat at the Incheon Asian Games on Sept. 21, 2014. (Yonhap file photo)

Kosuke Hagino of Japan, the surprising swimming champ, seized first place in the men's 200m individual medley with an Asian record of 1:55.34.

Hagino, voted the MVP of the Asian Games, stunned a pair of Olympic champs, Sun Yang of China and Park Tae-hwan of South Korea, to win the 200m freestyle race, one of four swimming gold medals here.

Qatar's Femi Seun Ogunode grabbed the gold in the men's 100m sprint in an Asian record of 9.93 seconds, becoming the fastest man on the continent.

Femi Seun Ogunode of Qatar makes a spurt during the men's 100-meter sprint at the Incheon Asian Games on Sept. 28, 2014. (Yonhap file photo) Femi Seun Ogunode of Qatar makes a spurt during the men's 100-meter sprint at the Incheon Asian Games on Sept. 28, 2014. (Yonhap file photo)

The Nigeria-born sprinter, who moved to Qatar to represent the west Asian country in 2009, got inside the 10-second barrier, which many runners originally from Asia have been struggling to break for years.

Spectators present at this year's Asiad tournaments may have been among the lucky ones; the 2010 Asian Games saw only three world records fall, while nine world records were set at the 2006 event.

The Busan Asian Games, another event hosted by South Korea in 2002, currently holds the mark for the highest number of world records set at an Asiad with 22.

"There were a total of 14 world records and 28 Asian records at this year's Asiad," said President of the Olympic Council Sheikh Ahmand Al-Fahad Al-Sabah during a wrap-up press conference for the global sports event.

"(The numerous records) at the Asian Games attests to the notion that the level of sports players in Asia is not that behind compared with that of the whole world."

   yjkim8826@yna.co.kr

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