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London 2012: Four Athletes Selected to Represent South Korea

The four Korean athletes who will participate in London 2012 have been selected.

On April 12th the ‘3rd Selection Tournament for the National Team for London 2012’ took place at the Taereung Athletes Village in Seoul. Dae-Hoon Lee won in the male +58kg category and In-Jong Lee won in the female +67kg category.  

?? In-Jong Lee.

The female +67kg category was disputed between In-Jong Lee, winner of the 2nd Selection Tournament, and Sae-Bom Ahn, winner of the 1st Selection Tournament. It was difficult to predict the outcome of their fight since the two are in the same Samsung S1 Team and know each other well. However, people related to taekwondo in Korea were having more expectations on Ahn, the rookie, than on the veteran, the reasons being her age –she is already 30– and her recent disappointment in a major event, where she only got the second place.  

The results were unexpected. Lee got 2 points from a head kick and won 9-3 over Ahn. Then she also beat Hye-Mi Park, the other candidate for the category, and earned her participation in London 2012.

As soon as the match was over, Lee and Ahn held each other and burst into tears. The rivalry between the senior and junior over the selection for London 2012 had put them under great stress, not to mention the discord between the team leaders and Lee.

?? Dai-Hoon Lee.

On the male -58kg category, Dae-Hoon Lee, winner from the 1st selection tournament and Kil-Su Lee, winner from the second one, fought for the spot. Dae-Hoon had lost against the other candidate Seung-Woo Seok, but only had to win over Kil-Su in order to get selected. In the end, Dae-Hoon, school senior, won 4-3 over Kil-Su in a tight match, and earned his spot in the team for London 2012.

Dae-Hoon Lee was regarded as the Korean athlete with the highest possibilities of clinching the Olympic gold. However, his performance has started to raise concerns for not meeting their expectationsduring the selection process for the national team.

The winners, In-Jong Lee and Dae-Hoon Lee will join the winners of the 2nd selection tournament, Dong-Min Cha (male +80kg) and Kyung-Seon Hwang (female -67kg), on April 16th at the Taereung Athletes Village to undergo the final 100 days training focusing on the Olympic gold.


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