Koreans chase past glory in handballIn the preliminary round of men’s handball on Wednesday, Croatia narrowly beat Korea 29-26. The 2.03-meter-tall (6’8”) Yoon Kyung-shin, nicknamed “the Cannon,” was on target for eight goals in 17 attempts, but missed a key penalty near the end of the game.
At a post-game press conference, Yoon said, “I don’t know if I missed the target because of fatigue or what. I should have scored.”
Korea faces Iceland on Friday, and Slovenia on Sunday. They squeaked by Russia 35-32 last Monday, and lost to Spain last Saturday 30-31. The team must finish in the top four of their six-team group to qualify for the quarterfinals, which begin Tuesday.
“Against Iceland we have to fix our mistakes in order to play better,” Yoon said. “We needed this win, and I believe that we will be ready for the game.”
Elsewhere, in what has been described as one of the most exciting handball matches at the Olympics so far, the Korean women’s team battled to a draw with Denmark on Tuesday.
Korea was the first non-European country to win an Olympic medal in handball; the Korean men’s team took silver in 1988. The women won gold in 1988 and 1992, but lost against Denmark in 1996 after the gold-medal match went into extra time.
by Joe Yong-hee