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Asian Games: Ikee grabs 5th gold in women's 400 medley relay

Japan's women's 4x100m medley relay team members celebrate their gold medal during the swimming competition at the 18th Asian Games in Jakarta, Indonesia, on Aug. 23, 2018. From left: Natsumi Sakai, Satomi Suzuki, Rikako Ikee and Tomomi Aoki. (AP Photo/Bernat Armangue)

JAKARTA (Kyodo) -- Rikako Ikee tied a Japan record with five gold medals in a single Asian Games on Thursday, when she swam the third leg of her team's 4x100 medley relay.

The Japanese quartet of Natsumi Sakai, Satomi Suzuki, Ikee and Tomomi Aoki finished in a games and Japan record time of 3 minutes, 54.73 seconds and leading runner-up Hong Kong by a whopping 8.42. Singapore collected the bronze medal.

The 18-year-old Ikee, who came to Jakarta with a goal of winning eighth gold medals in the GBK Aquatic Center pool, could only manage silver the day before in the mixed medley relay.

"I got a big lead to work with and my focus was on holding on to it," Ikee said. "I'm so happy with this after the frustration from yesterday."

Earlier, Ryosuke Irie lost his bid for a fourth straight gold medal in the Asian Games men's 200-meter backstroke, but Suzuki and Shinri Shioura both grabbed gold and led 1-2 Japan finishes in their individual events.

Irie, the three-time defending champ, won a silver medal but was in fact blown out of the pool, finishing in 1 minute, 55.11 seconds, 1.12 behind Xu Jiayu of China, the runner-up to Irie four years ago in Incheon, South Korea.

"I wasn't really concerned with him (Xu)," said Irie. "I was just focused on swimming my own race. When everything is over, I'll have a chance to break this down, but I have another race and I'm focused on that now."

The victory over 200 meters gave Xu a sweep of the backstroke golds here after wins in the 50 and 100 meters. He also won gold in the mixed medley relay.

Japan's Keita Sunama was third in 1:55.54, 0.43 behind Irie.

Suzuki defended her games title in the women's 50-meter breaststroke in a games record of 30.83 seconds, while teammate Miho Teramura was second. It was Suzuki's second gold, following her 100 breaststroke triumph.

Shioura was next into the pool and kept things rolling for Japan in the men's 100 free by leading another 1-2 finish. Shioura, who won 4x100 freestyle gold on Wednesday, touched in 48.71, 0.01 ahead of teammate Katsumi Nakamura.

"My goal was to swim aggressively and that's why I think I swam a good race," said Shioura, who won four silvers in Incheon. "The end was really hard, so I don't have a clear memory of the finish."

"As an individual win, this is a completely different kind of joy from last night."

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