Korea Falters at Asian Games

  • By Seok Nam-jun

    August 24, 2018 13:51

    There will be no Korean archers in the women's recurve final at the Asian Games in Indonesia for the first time in more than 40 years.

    World No. 1 Chang Hye-jin, who won two gold medals at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, lost to an Indonesian archer in the quarterfinals on Thursday, and Kang Chae-young lost to a Chinese opponent in the semifinals.

    This is the first time Korean archers have failed to advance to the women's individual recurve final since archery was officially adopted as a competitive sport at the 1978 Asian Games in Bangkok. Korea had eyed its fourth consecutive gold-medal finish in the women's individual recurve.

    Chang Hye-jin pulls on her bow in the women's recurve event at the Asian Games in Indonesia on Thursday. /Yonhap

    Korea suffered another shock loss in the women's team event in foil fencing, as it failed to win its sixth consecutive gold medal, finishing with a bronze after losing to Japan in the semifinals the same day.

    Korea also saw an end to its dominance in individual and team dressage, which dated back to the 1998 Asian Games in Bangkok. It won no gold medal in the discipline for the first time in 24 years. In the mixed team event in badminton, Korea failed to pick up a medal for the first time since the 1978 Asiad.

    There are worries that Korea will not be able to achieve its goal of finishing second for the sixth consecutive time by winning more than 65 gold medals. Not to mention China which leads all Asian countries in the medal count, Japan, which used to be lagging behind Korea, is having a great run sweeping podiums.

    Having fallen short of expectations in its strongest disciplines like archery, badminton, fencing, shooting and wrestling, Korea is now in a desperate situation ahead of the upcoming 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo.

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