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Korea mean business; arrive at Medellin World Cup early

7 May 2014
Medellin (COL)
The feared Korean recurve squad gave Shanghai a miss two weeks ago – to shoot national Asian Game selections – but they’re in Medellin early, looking to make a dramatic 2014 debut.

Korea’s plane arrived in Medellin a whole week in advance of the start of the second stage of this year’s Archery World Cup stage. Images posted on the event’s Facebook page confirmed exactly who will be representing the Asian nation in 2014.

The recurve men’s winner of the 2011 worlds in Turin and 2012 Tokyo Archery World Cup Final, who was controversially left off Korea’s London 2012 team, KIM Woojin makes his return to the line-up in Medellin. KIM is joined by current Olympic Champion OH Jin Hyek, current World Champion LEE Seungyun and newbie KU Bonchan.

It’s the women’s recurve team that’s seen the most upheaval. It’s been much reported that both KI Bo Bae and YUN Ok Hee did not qualify for the squad.

CHANG Hye Jin and JOO Hyun Jung, the other two recurve women on Korea’s 2013 team, do return. But they’ll be joined by two massive wildcards.

JUNG Dasomi won the Antalya 2011 Archery World Cup stage and was briefly excellent on the circuit, but disappeared after winning the London 2012 test event. While LEE Tuk Young’s last international archery tournament was the Olympic test event before that!

LEE Tuk Young is a multiple Archery World Cup team gold and individual bronze medallist in 2006-07, and was recurve women’s team world champion with Korea at both the 2005 and 2007 world championships. (A bit of trivia: That 2007 title would have been with CHOI Bomin, who won individual compound gold at Shanghai this year!)

Ms LEE will be hoping she can rekindle some of that mid-00s form – and, just maybe, we’ll see an all-LEE Medellin mixed team from Korea, if she partners with the young Mr LEE.

“This is my first time in South America – and, of course, Medellin,” said LEE Seungyun. “It’s a very nice city with good weather: not too hot and not too humid, which is perfect for shooting.”

At the age of just 19, Seungyun won his world champion title by beating teammate OH in the gold medal match at Belek 2013. LEE offered some humble words about his progress since then: “personally, I’m not expecting too much in Medellin. Back in Korea, I wasn’t doing great.”

“I’m focused on just doing my best and maybe getting to the semifinals… who knows?”

We’ll find out in a little over a week’s time! Until then, Korea will practise with Argentina, Eqypt and any other countries that arrive in Medellin ahead of the event.

The second stage of the 2014 Archery World Cup kicks off in Medellin next Tuesday.