By Seol Ha-eun Reporter-HANGZHOU COA = The ‘world’s strongest’ Korean boccia team has won four silver and one bronze medal in the singles competition at the Hangzhou 2022 Para Asian Games.
The Korean boccia team won four silver and one bronze medal in the singles event at the Hangzhou Gymnasium in Zhejiang Province of China on Friday.
Choi Ye-jin (Sport Class BC3-Chungcheongnam-do) defeated Kang Sun-hee (Sport Class BC3-Gwangju Disabled Boccia Federation) 5-1 in the semifinals of the women’s individual event to reach the final, but lost to China’s Yang Beibei 2-3 to claim the silver medal.
Down 0-3 in the second end, Choi recovered a point in the third end and then looked to set up a dramatic tie in the fourth end when she landed her last ball close to the target.
However, Yang Beibei’s last ball pushed out one of Choi’s balls near the target, leaving her with only one point.
After losing to Choi Ye-jin in the semifinals, Kang Sun-hee was unable to advance to the bronze medal match.
Boccia standout Jung Ho-won also finished second in the men’s singles final, falling 1-6 to Thailand’s Chuchuenklin Akadej.
After taking the lead in the first end, Chung chose to play defense in the second end and was down by four points.
Unable to break through his opponent’s defensive play, he dropped two more points in the final two ends and had to settle for the silver medal.
In the women’s singles, Chung So-young (Sport Class BC2 – Chungnam Disabled Boccia Federation) lost to Hong Kong’s Nguyen Hiu-ram in an overtime tiebreaker after being tied 6-6 in the final.
Chung has consistently finished in the top half of the field in previous mixed events, competing against male athletes with differential strength, and won a bronze medal at the London 2012 Paralympic Games.
Chung’s performance in the final was no different.
He was down by four in the second end, but bounced back in the third with five balls close to the target.
After conceding two points in the fourth end to tie the game, she conceded one point in overtime to fall to her knees.
Kim Do-hyun (Sport Class BC1 – Chungnam Disabled Boccia Federation) also claimed silver in the men’s singles final, losing 1-7 to Thailand’s Huadpradit Witsanu.
Earlier, Lee Jung-ho (Sport Class BC2 – Gangwon Provincial Disabled Sports Federation) won the bronze medal in the men’s singles with a 4-2 victory over Thailand’s Seri Watcharaphorn in the bronze medal match.
National boccia coach Lim Kwang-taek said after the match, “I think the players were a little tired after traveling to the World Cup in Portugal last Chuseok. We were wary of Thailand, the original Asian powerhouse, but they played well. We need to do a better job of analyzing our opponents,” he said, reflecting on the match.
“At the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games, we didn’t win an individual gold medal, but we won gold in the team competition. I will keep the good memories of that time and try to achieve good results in the team competition,” Lim said, adding that she will continue to work hard in the remaining matches.
The team will begin their journey in the team competition on the 26th.
South Korean boccia has been one of the world’s most dominant sports, with strong performances on the international stage, including at the Paralympic Games.
From the 1988 Seoul Paralympic Games to the 2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games, South Korea has won nine consecutive gold medals and has the most gold medals in the world (10).
The sport’s BC3 athletes, led by World No. 1 Jung Ho-won, have been dominating the world stage, but at the Asian Games, they suffered a setback. 토토사이트