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A 15-Year-old Basketball Monster From Korea

Posted November. 11, 2004 23:13,   


Even though it’s a lonely life in a dormitory in a foreign land hardly able to communicate in English, it’s not difficult because he has a grand dream.

The “promising junior basketball player” Kim Jin-su (15 years old, 203cm) is studying abroad at Montclaire High School near Los Angeles. He was in his last year at Sam-il middle school last summer when he was scouted for the first time for a Korean athlete by a high school in America, the motherland of basketball, and with full-scale team practices starting on November 13, he is already receiving heated attention.

Even though the season has not started yet, he is receiving full support from the school and requests from the press for interviews are pouring in. This is because since July, by participating in the junior camp held in Los Angeles prior to his admittance to school, his fame has increased. His brilliant record of being the first middle school student to become a member of the Juvenile Korean National team and leading the team to second place in the Asian Championship also helped.

The school coach, Greg Paterson, lavishly complimented him, saying, “Kim Jin-su has an astoundingly great ability.” Recently, in an interview in the Los Angeles Daily News, it was reported that he was “a promising athlete is in America with a dazzling offense combined with an ability for outside shooting and swift attacks.” The scouting manager of the prestigious basketball university, UCLA, is already contacting Kim Jin-su.

Meanwhile, Kim Jin-su is looking forward to the opening of the season at the end of this month, and spending his days under a crowded schedule. Under a stern regulation of prohibiting group training during the off-season, he listens to six hours of classes and spends three or four hours at his desk doing his homework and piled up studies. He trains three times a week for two hours under a private coach learning advanced techniques, and at the school weight training facility with the latest equipment, they are concentrating on muscle strengthening.

Taking an energetic step towards his ultimate goal of entering the National Basketball Association (NBA), Kim Jin-su said, “as there is nobody to enforce you to work hard in America, you cannot succeed without working hard,” and that “by supplementing my shortcomings I want to become a supreme basketball player without fail.”

Jong-Seok Kim kjs0123@donga.com