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2017 SOUTHEAST ASIAN GAMES

Malaysia emerge as 2017 SEA Games overall champions

Malaysia emerge as 2017 SEA Games overall champions

ADEK BERRY

AFP


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For the first time in 16 years, Malaysia came out as overall champions at the biennial Southeast Asian Games.

The hosts achieved 145 gold medals, 92 silvers and 86 bronzes.

Malaysia’s last championship win - by virtue of their previous highest total of 111 golds - occurred at the 2001 Games, also held in Kuala Lumpur.

Since Thursday is Hari Merdeka (Malaysia’s Independence Day), the celebration will be double in the Southeast Asian country.

Medal table

Second-placed Thailand, who were champions in four of the last five SEA Games, clinched 72 golds. Vietnam achieved 58 golds, Singapore 57, Indonesia 38, the Philippines 24, Myanmar seven, Cambodia three and Laos two.

Of the 11 participating nations, only Brunei and Timor Leste failed to claim a single gold.

Thais defend football crown

On Tuesday night, Thailand’s men's national football team successfully defended their crown at the Games.

The final against Malaysia, held at the Shah Alam Stadium, brought heartbreak for the hosts, who lost courtesy of a first-half own goal by keeper Haziq Nadzli.

Curiously, Thailand’s victory was a repeat of the 2001 SEA Games final: the same venue, the same rivals, the same score.

Thailands’s head coach, Worrawoot Srimaka, praised the performance of his team.

"I'm proud of the performance of my boys, who were mostly making their debut in the SEA Games. They performed very well in every match and I hope they will continue their fine form at the AFC U-23 Football Championship in China next year," Srimaka told the press.

Over to you Philippines

The 2019 Southeast Asian Games are set to be hosted by the Philippines, who received the Federation flag at the closing ceremony of the Kuala Lumpur Games.

Originally, the Games were scheduled to be hosted by Brunei, but in 2015 the country pulled out due to "financial and logistical reasons".

In recent months, there had been uncertainty over the Philippines’ hosting of the event following the withdrawal of government support, as there were plans to use the funds reserved for the Games for the rehabilitation of Marawi, which on May 23 was occupied by ISIS supporters.

However, on August 16, the Philippine government reversed its withdrawal of support for the Games and gave the green light to hosting the next edition.

The Philippines last hosted the Games in 2005, emerging as overall champions with 113 gold medals.

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