MANILA (Xinhua) – The 30th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games closed here on Wednesday evening after 11 competition days.
Salvador Medialdea, the Executive Secretary of the Philippines, declared the conclusion of the regional biennial multi-sport gala at a compact and neat closing ceremony held at New Clark City Sports Complex in the evening.
“We celebrate today as the overall champion of the 30th SEA Games but we also celebrate with all the athletes,” said Alan Peter Cayetano, the chairperson of the Philippine SEA Games Organizing Committee at the ceremony.
At his speaking, he said the Philippine government will build a national high school in New Clark City for sports that will give full scholarships to Filipino athletes, stressing that the Philippines will make full use of facilities to bid for the hosting right of 2030 Asian Games.
“We have 10 years to prepare,” he added.
The best athletes prizes in this year’s SEA Games were also awarded at the ceremony. Quah Zheng Wen of Singapore swimming team topped in the male’s category with six golds and two silvers, while the Vietnamese Nguyen Thi Anh Vien, who also attained six golds and two silvers in swimming events, was awarded as the best female athlete.
The Games, one of the biggest ever editions since its inauguration in 1959, drew a total of over 8,000 athletes from 11 countries to see action in 39 venues across Metro Manila, Subic, New Clark City, Angeles, among other cities on the country’s main Luzon island.
This edition is most notable for being the first edition to include esports and obstacle courses as well as having the highest number of sports in the history of the games, at a total of 56.
After the competitions, host the Philippines collected 149 golds and 387 medals in total. The traditional powerhouse Thailand obtained 92 golds and 318 medals in all as an evident third place in the medal tally.
Vietnam, which surpassed Thailand in the late match days, bags 98 gold medals to climb to the runner-up slot in the medal tally. The Vietnamese also attained the last gold in the Games after defeating the Indonesians at men’s beach handball event on Wednesday morning.
Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore lined up from fourth to sixth places, clinching 72, 55 and 53 golds, separately.
The next edition will be held in Vietnam in 2021.