The 2022 Asian Games i Hangzhou has reached its finale following the end of the Closing Ceremony ©Getty Images

Olympic Council of Asia Acting President Randhir Singh has claimed that "the world now knows Hangzhou" after the city successfully staged the biggest Asian Games in history.

The 19th edition of the Games, which featured a record 12,417 athletes, reached its conclusion here with the Closing Ceremony.

The spectacular display highlighted the local flora, celebrated athletes, and looked forward to Aichi-Nagoya 2026.

"Tonight, the spectacular 19th Asian Games Hangzhou will come to an end," Singh told the crowd.

"Over the past 16 days, we have shared many unforgettable moments in this magnificent city.

"And it is time to say, 'Thank you, Hangzhou' for a wonderful and memorable Asian Games.

"We will never forget our time here together – the magnificent stadiums, the enthusiasm and generous support of the Chinese people and, of course, the amazing performances of our Asian athletes.

"The OCA is proud of you!

"Thanks to the 19th Asian Games, Asia and the world now knows Hangzhou!"

Acting OCA President Randhir Singh claims
Acting OCA President Randhir Singh claims "the world now knows Hangzhou" after its staging of the 19th Asian Games ©Getty Images

Hangzhou was China's third Asian Games host city, after Beijing in 1990 and Guangzhou in 2010.

A series of cultural performances took place at the Closing Ceremony with the lotus and osmanthus, Hangzhou's city flower, among those giving a starring role. 

Around 1,000 years ago, a Song dynasty verse described Hangzhou osmanthus flowers as "pleasantly fragrant in autumn and lotus flowers blooming for miles and miles".

The day of the Closing Ceremony also coincided with "Cold Dew", one of China's 24 solar terms being added to United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization World Intangible Cultural Heritage List, representing a fruitful season for the two.

In addition to the artistic displays, there was a view to the future with a handover ceremony for the next edition of the Games.

The 2026 event is set to take place in Aichi and Nagoya in Japan, which will be a landmark 20th edition, following a handover ceremony.

Firstly, a Torch was passed to Singh by Hangzhou's Mayor Yao Gaoyuan.

Singh then handed the Torch to Ohmura Hideaki, Governor of Aichi Prefecture and Nakata Hideo, Deputy Mayor of Nagoya City. 

Finally, the official OCA flag was passed through the hands of Yao and Singh to Hideaki and Hideo.

The two Japanese officials took it in turns to wave the flag and mark the official passing of the baton to Aichi-Nagoya 2026. 

The Hangzhou 2022 digital torchbearer played a part in the Closing Ceremony after also featuring in the opener on September 23 ©Getty Images
The Hangzhou 2022 digital torchbearer played a part in the Closing Ceremony after also featuring in the opener on September 23 ©Getty Images

The evening was capped off with the return of the digital torchbearer that first appeared at the Opening Ceremony.

It is a colossal light display that helped to light the Cauldron in the Opening Ceremony before bringing the Games to an end by extinguishing it.

The projection then appeared to run out of the Stadium, looking back once to symbolise fond memories of the Games before dispersing into the night sky.

Prior to the Closing Ceremony, the final sporting action of the Games took place and saw the final three gold medals awarded.

China took their gold medal tally to 201 as they retained the artistic swimming team title.

Japan then won the men's team kata karate tournament before Gu Shiau Shuang of Chinese Taipei won the women's under-50kg kumite division.