Rikako Ikee Becomes First Woman Ever To Win Asian Games MVP

18-year-old Rikako Ikee was just named ‘MVP’ of the 2018 Asian Games, becoming the first woman ever to claim the award. While competing in Jakarta at the Asian Games, Ikee amassed an incredible 6 gold medals, including individual titles in the 50m free, 100m free, 50m fly and 100m fly. Her contribution to her nation’s 4 x 100m free and 4 x 100m medley relays also helped Japan gather gold in those races.

With her major hardware haul, Ikee became the first swimmer to win 6 gold medals at a single Asian Games. Adding in her silvers in the 4 x 200m freestyle and mixed medley relays, Ikee raced her way to 8 medals in all, equaling the single Asian Games Record held by North Korean shooter So Gin-man.

The first woman to win the award, Ikee represents the 4th swimmer to have been acknowledged since the Games’ inception. Japan’s Kosuke Kitajima was named MVP in 2002, Korea’s Park Tae Hwan in 2006 and Japan’s Kosuke Hagino at the last edition in 2014.

The Chairman of the OCA MVP Award Selection Committee, Raja Randhir Singh, “There have been some remarkable performances by several athletes in different sports in Jakarta and Palembang but the achievements of Rikako Ikee really stood out and impressed all members of the panel.

“On behalf of the OCA I would like to congratulate Miss Ikee on her record-breaking achievements. She is not only the first female athlete to win six gold medals at a single edition of the Asian Games but also the first female winner of our OCA MVP Award.” (South China Morning Post)

With the title, Ikee was given the OCA MVP Trophy along with US$50,000 in prize money.

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25 free champ

The real story is that this hasn’t happened before. It’s 2018! Think about the great female swimmers we’ve had that have never won this… Natalie Coughlin, Katie Ledecky, Jenny Thompson, Sarah sorjstrom, Taylor Ruck, etc. How did it take this long for a woman to win it?

Pvdh

This has to be one of the dumbest comments I’ve ever laid my eyes on.

ERVINFORTHEWIN

agreed

Steve Nolan

It’s pretty funny, even if it wasn’t intentionally a joke. That’s a funny list of swimmers he picked

PsychoDad

Well, Natalie Coughlin is half Asian, so it is dumb maybe about 87% only 🙂

Oldswimfan

It’s 2018…. Please learn which countries are in Asia…

Well deserved for Rikako Ikee

King Kay

The award is the Asian Games MVP. You have to be from an Asian country to compete in the Asian Games. All of the women you mentioned are from non-Asian countries, thus they never competed in the Asian Games.

Yozhik

Their people are not Asian.

25 free champ

Look at the upvotes given to YOZHIK and the people who responded to me below. Then look at the insane amount of downvotes I got. Then try telling me that there isn’t a downvote bot that has been programmed against Bobo and I. I rest my case.

AWSI DOOGER

Agreed. I thought you nailed it. You properly focused on swimming caliber and gender inequality while everyone else fixated on some technicality. Rotten.

If I had signs and knew where to go I would protest in favor of those others you mentioned

Yozhik

The following is my translation of a joke.
A wife calling her husband in the car who is driving home from work.
” Listen, Dear. Be careful. There is a breaking news on tv that some crazy idiot is driving wrong way on highway.”
” I see” – replies husband.
“And not the only one”

AWSI DOOGER

Meanwhile that is forced and not funny. It is middle of the road humor, like sitcom lines requiring a laugh track for backing. Easily the best jokes are either very subtle or very over the top, and in either instance with virtually nobody else realizing you are attempting a joke, and consequently making fools of themselves in frantic tunnel-vision response. That’s what happened here.

It was expertly executed

Yozhik

Thank you for explaining such a simple joke in such sophisticated way with the wording that pales any SAT vocabulary.
If one guy thinks that he is right and everybody else are not then he definitely drives wrong way.

GO SARAH SJÖSTRÖM

This is no surprise. I mean, she is like the only good female in Asia right now

Bear drinks beer

In terms of competitiveness on world stage, Ikee is not the best female in Asia, let alone the ‘only good’. Ohashi Yui, Kim Seoyeong and Liu Xiang have better chances to win gold at World Championships and Olympics.

Jim C

Put it this way. If I could pick one Asian female to become an American for the 2020 Olympics it would be Ikee–except, of course, with the Olympics in Tokyo, that might not be a good idea.

Bear drinks beer

I’m not American, but if I were, I wouldn’t make the same choice. How much could she contribute to the US Team? Only one minor medal in 100 butterfly. US can win women’s and mixed medley relays with her or not.

Old Man Chalmers

Only a minor medal in the 100 fly? With Sjostrom getting older and Ikee hitting her stride, Ikee is in contention for the gold come tokyo. Not to mention she’s number 1 in the world this year. She’s sub 1:55 in the 200 free which is good enough to medal individually. While her addition to the relays wouldn’t change the podium, it would improve USA’s times. Her 55 mid 100 fly splits and sub 1:55 200 free would allow the USA to smash their medley WR and finally break the 4×200 WR. With her current 100 free time, she could do a 53 flat on a flying start, which would close the gap between them and Australia.

Yozhik

As it was reported by reuters.com, her ambition is not an Olympic gold medal but the world record in 100 fly. The gold medal comes automatically with that.

Coach Mike 1952

Not necessarily – C1 & Sarah Sjostrom in Rio are just two recent examples. There must be others too.

Old Man Chalmers

… provided she does it in the olympic final. C1, Watanabe and many others have broken WRs but failed to get an international gold in the same event that year.

Bear drinks beer

People said the same about Oleksiak and Bingjie.

ERVINFORTHEWIN

well people talk too early …..

Newport Beach Lover

Yui Ohashi is as well, but she is predominantly an IMer like most IMers.

ERVINFORTHEWIN

Only good ? i would say excellent considering her margin of improvements ….

Coach Mike 1952

Ohashi? Just one example…

GO SARAH SJÖSTRÖM

So should I say “she is the most fantastic swimmer”? That wouldn’t be so nice to the others. There are Asian females that has wr but she doesn’t so I wouldn’t say she is the greatest.

ERVINFORTHEWIN

there is always a thin line between extremes to describe a swimmer . Nobody said she is the greatest or anything like that .

GO SARAH SJÖSTRÖM

Good could be meant in many ways

Sir Swimsalot

Way to go Ikee!

About Loretta Race

Loretta Race

Loretta grew up outside Toledo, OH, where she swam age group and high school. Graduating from Xavier University, she stayed in the Cincinnati, OH area and currently resides just outside the city in Northern KY.  Loretta got back into the sport of swimming via Masters and now competes and is …

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