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“We Would Rather Lose than Play Half-heartedly”

Posted March. 07, 2007 06:48,   


He was never selected as a national athlete during his college days. Neither was he during his professional days. Even while he worked as a coach, he could not put the national flag of Korea on his shoulders. Just once, he was chosen as a member of the national team for a goodwill championship as a junior at Gongju High School.

He is Coach Kim Kyung-moon (49, photo) of the Doosan Bears, appointed as the leader of the Korean national baseball team for the 2008 Beijing Olympics’ preliminary elimination game.

He was elected because Sun Dong-ryul of the Samsung Lions, who was a leading candidate for the manager post, declined the position. Despite that, his appointment has been taken positively both at home and outside the baseball diamond.

He never gives up until the end of the games. This attitude has continued even now as he leads the team as a director. Kim chooses to lose instead of playing games carelessly. Many say that his way of leading the team can be a key to reviving the sluggish Korean baseball.

Three Years Ago, He Led the Korean Series with Doosan in the Cellar-

In 2004, when he was appointed as the manager of the Doosan Bears, his team’s previous records were the lowest in the nation. The ace Gary Rath was scouted to Yomiuri Giants, and the top batter Jeong Su-geun to the Lotte Giants. At the time, Kim said, “No excuses. As the director, I will bear all the responsibilities.” In the year, Doosan emerged in the postseason.

In 2005, the prospects of winning were slim for Doosan Bears. The top pitchers, including Gu Ja-un and Lee Jae-young, departed due to military service scandals. Kim said, “At any given condition, a director should manage a team well.” The Doosan Bears rose to the Korean Series in the year 2005.

His favorite phrase is “A post of manager of a team…..” His charisma is second to none when he sets the atmosphere or takes his team.

Remarkable Charisma without National Athletic Experiences-

Sun declined to take the post of the director of the Olympic Games, but he accepted the position as the batting coach. Kim, with ’78 school registration number, is a senior to Sun, who entered the same Korea University in 1981. In a dormitory where four athletes were living, Kim was the “room head” while Sun was a “room subordinate.” At the time, both suffered from acne. Kim, knowing Sun’s sufferings, went to a clinic with Sun near the Seoul Station.

Kim’s close relationship with Sun, who has well-rounded experiences in international matches and is also well aware of Japanese batters, encourages the national Olympic baseball team.

Senior-Junior Relationship between Sun and Kim-

At the managerial room before games, Kim is always watching Major League and Japanese baseball games on TV. Kim, who is also senior to Park Chan-ho at Gongju High School, is interested in athletes playing overseas. He was once trained in the United States, and has a profound knowledge of Major League and Japanese baseball.

Also, he reads books on top foreign managers in order to expand his abilities as a manager.