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Woo Sang-hyeok is favorite to win gold in high jump

Posted March. 16, 2022 07:58,   

Updated March. 16, 2022 07:58


South Korean high jumper Woo Sang-hyeok will attempt to win a gold medal at the World Athletics Championships.

The World Athletics (WA) announced on Tuesday on its website favorites to win a gold at the World Athletics Championships to be held in Belgrade, Serbia, featuring Woo in the men’s high jump. “Woo seems to be the strongest contender for now,” said the WA. “He will be the second winner or medalist from Asia, following 2008 winner Mutaz Essa Barshim from Qatar.”

Woo is the only South Korean athlete named in the final entry list revealed by the WA for the World Athletics Championships. It’s the first time in 10 years for a South Korean athlete since Lee Yeon-kyung who competed in the women’s 60-meter hurdles at the 2012 Istanbul championships.

Woo is truly the most outstanding athlete in the high jump. He was ranked in fourth place with a record of 2.35 meters at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. He broke the previous record in the men’s high jump set by a South Korean athlete and the South Korean track and field Olympic record.

His achievements have continued even in the new year. The 26-year-old high jumper broke the South Korean record again and won at the World Athletics Indoor Tour held last month in Hustopece, Czechia with a record of 2.36 meters. The record set by Woo was the world’s highest record in the men’s high jump this season.

Woo is the only athlete who jumped over 2.3 meters indoors this season among the athletes who will compete at the World Athletics Championships. There were five others whose records of the year were 2.3 meters but they are not competing at the championships. The runner-up is Thomas Carmoy from Belgium who was ranked in the third position at the European Athletics Indoor Championships. One variable of the competition is Gianmarco Tamberi from Italy who won a gold in the Tokyo Olympics and will be competing for the first time this season in the indoor championships.

The finals of the men’s high jump featuring Woo will begin at 6:45 p.m. on Sunday.

Bae-Jung Kim wanted@donga.com