Jakarta. Indonesia captured two more gold medals in the 2018 Asian Games by winning both the women's and men's speed relay climbing competitions at Jakabaring Sport City in Palembang, South Sumatra, on Monday (27/08).
The women's relay team, comprised of Aries Susanti Rahayu, Puji Lestari and Rajiah Sallsabillah, finished the event in 25.45 seconds, followed by China in second place.
Their success was repeated in the men's speed relay final, which saw two Indonesian teams pitted against each another. The team comprised of Muhammad Hinayah, Rindi Supriyanto and Abu Dzar Yulianto won gold in a time of 18.68 seconds, while the other, consisting of Aspar Jaelolo, Sabri, Pangeran Septo Wibowo Siburian and Muhammad Fajri Alfian, took silver.
This brings Indonesia's total medal tally in climbing, which was included in the Asian Games for the first time this year, to six – three gold, two silver and one bronze – after a win by Aries and a second place by Puji in the women's speed climbing competition on Friday. Aspar finished third in the men's speed climbing event.
The sport has attracted public attention after a video showing junior high school student Yohanes "Joni" Gama climbing a 12-meter flagpole to disentangle a twisted rope during an Independence Day ceremony in Belu, East Nusa Tenggara, went viral.
Joni met with Sports Minister Imam Nahrawi, who said he believed the 14-year-old boy would inspire Indonesia's athletes participating in this year's Asian Games.
State-run news agency Antara quoted Joni as saying that he was not keen to become a professional climber, but that he hoped his patriotic act would inspire the athletes.
Climbing has now become Indonesia's second-most lucrative sport for medals at this year's event, after pencak silat, in which the country won eight on Monday.
Indonesia also won a bronze medal in the Southeast Asian martial art, which made its debut at the 2018 Asian Games.
Indonesia, the world's fourth most populous country, has now accumulated 22 gold medals in the Asian Games, exceeding its target of winning at least 16 to make it into the top 10 in the medal tally at this year's multisport event.