For the first time, the Olympic team of Japan finished third in the medal count in the Asian Games.At the 1986 Asian Games in Seoul, South Korea, the Japanese team won 58 gold medals and took third place in the unofficial team championships, behind China (94 gold) and the host country (93 gold).

Host Country

Did you know- The 1964 Summer Olympic Games was held in Tokyo, the capital city of Japan, one of the most industrialized nations on the planet. For the first time, Asia hosted the Olympics. Certainly the selection of Japan was influenced by the country’s economic wealth. Only a few short years ago, Tokyo hosted the III Asian Games.

1972 Winter Games

Did you know- Sapporo hosted the Winter Olympic Games in the early 1970s. This Olympic event had served to inspire the modernization of Sapporo, one of the most beautiful cities in Japan.

Handball

Did you know- At the 1982 Asian Games in New Delhi (India), the men’s handball team won the silver medal, only behind the People’s Republic of China (gold).

Volleyball

Did you know- In 1964 the First Olympic Championship was won by Japan. By 1972, the Japanese senior men’s national team won the second Olympic gold medal of its history in men’s volleyball in the Summer Games in Munich, West Germany. In the gold-medal game, they defeated the German Democratic Republic 3-1. Nonetheless, twenty-four years on, at the Asian Olympic Qualification Tournament in the mid-1990s, the men’s volleyball team was eliminated and did not qualify for the 1996 Summer Games in the United States. For the first time, it could not compete in the Olympic Volleyball Tournament. Two years ago, however, Japan, the local squad, had won the gold medal at the Hiroshima Asian Games; this team won the country’s only Asian gold that decade. In 2002, they secured the bronze medal, behind South Korea (gold) and Iran (silver). Curiously, the most Asian gold medals won by a national squad is seventh by Japan: Tokyo’58, Jakarta’62, Bangkok ’66, Bangkok ’70, Tehran’74, and New Delhi ’82, and Hiroshima’94.

Moscow Olympics

Did you know- The XXII Olympiad was boycotted by the Japanese government because of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.

Asian Cup Football

Did you know- By 1992, the men’s Asian Tournament was won Japan. In the gold-medal game, they dethroned title holders Saudi Arabia (1-0). Eight years on, it finished in first place.

Alejandro Guevara Onofre: Freelance writer. Alejandro is author of a host of articles/essays about over 220 countries and dependencies (and American States as well), from ecology, history, tourism and national heroes to Olympic sports, foreign relations, and wildlife. In addition, he has published some books on women’s rights, among them “History of the Women in America” and “Famous Americans.”