TOKYO (REUTERS) – Japan secured the country’s record medal haul at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games of 58 medals, of which 27 are gold.
The new record far exceeds its previous record of 37 medals, of which 16 were gold, at the 2000 Athens Olympics.
Initial projections by data company Gracenote put Japan’s expected haul this year at 60.
Interest in the Olympics appeared high, with TV ratings for a tense football semi-final between Japan and Spain at one point soaring to 43 per cent, according to the daily Yomiuri.
Japan also took medals in newly minted sports such as surfing, skateboarding, and climbing, while also winning a surprise gold medal in fencing.
Polls conducted prior to the opening ceremony showed that the majority of the public was opposed to having the Games this year, after they were postponed in 2020 due to Covid-19.
During the Games, organisers appeared successful in preventing a superspreader event among Olympic staff and athletes.
However, daily coronavirus cases at the host city have ballooned during the Games, exceeding previous highs and at one point reaching over 5000 cases.
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