The Guangzhou Asian Games are just halfway through, but already they can safely be called the China Games. As of 10 p.m. on Sunday, China had won 145 out of 392 gold medals awarded so far, putting it on track to clinching the top spot for the eighth consecutive Asiad since the 1982 Games in New Delhi.
China has performed well not only in its traditional strongholds of table tennis, shooting and badminton, but also in fields that Japan used to sweep such as swimming, establishing itself as a force that cannot be matched in Asia.
Although China's runaway win was predicted, the extent is beyond expectations. With 84 gold medals still to be decided, the country is almost certain to break its record of 183 golds set in the 1990 Asiad in Beijing.
Meanwhile, Korea added 12 gold, 10 silver and 11 bronze medals on Saturday and Sunday to bring its count to 55, 46 and 61, or 162 in total. The women's archery team won its field for a fourth consecutive Asian Games by fending off a fierce challenge from China on Sunday, while the men's epee fencing team defended its Asiad title by beating Kazakhstan 45-31 the same day.
In mixed doubles badminton, Shin Baek-cheol and Lee Hyo-jung gave Korea its first gold in the field in eight years by defeating Zhang Nan and Zhao Yunlei of China 2-0. Korea's other golds over the weekend came in individual and team events in golf, fencing, sailing, bowling and cycling.
Although Korea is unlikely to catch up with China, it is still far ahead of Japan, which has 30 gold, 53 silver and 62 bronze medals for a total of 145. Although track and field, a traditional stronghold of Japan, is still left, it is unlikely that the ranking will change.