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Korea to send largest-ever number of athletes for Asian Games in Hangzhou

Korea to send largest-ever number of athletes for Asian Games in Hangzhou

Posted September. 13, 2023 08:18,   

Updated September. 13, 2023 08:18


In the lead-up to the upcoming Hangzhou Asian Games, South Korea will send its largest-ever contingent of athletes, with 1,140 participants, including 867 athletes and 273 officials. This even surpasses the number of participants in the 2014 Incheon Games, which took place on home soil and had 1,066 participants.

Among South Korean athletes competing in this event, Woo Ha-ram (25), a male diver, has won the most medals in the Asian Games, with a total of eight medals, three silver and five bronze. In the 2014 Incheon Games, Woo won one silver and three bronze medals, and in the 2018 Jakarta-Palembang Games, he added two silver and two bronze medals to his collection. Woo Ha-ram is determined to secure his first-ever gold medal in the individual diving event and excel the formidable world-class Chinese divers to be gathered in Hangzhou.

The athletes with the most gold medals in their respective sports are Gu Bon-gil (34) in men's fencing and Na Areum (33) in women's cycling, both with five gold medals each. They will set new records if they can clinch an additional two gold medals each in Hangzhou. In the 2018 Games, Gu Bon-gil became a double champion, while Na Areum secured four gold medals. Five athletes, including the South Korean swimming legend Park Tae-hwan (34), have won six gold medals each for South Korea.

The athlete with the most appearances in Asian Games is Lee Yoon-cheol (41) in men's hammer throw, competing in his 6th consecutive Asian Games from the 2002 Busan Games to the upcoming Hangzhou Games. Lee, who holds the Korean record (73.77 meters), achieved his best Asian Games result with a fourth-place finish at the 2006 Doha Games. The oldest participant is Lim Hyun (73) in women's bridge, while the youngest, Kim Sa-rang (12), in women's chess, has a 61-year age difference. Bridge is a mind sport played with a 52-card deck to compete.

Hong-Gu Kang windup@donga.com