SPORTS

Korean Olympic champion ousted in quarterfinals at taekwondo worlds

By a2017001
  • Published : Jun 25, 2017 - 17:44
  • Updated : Jun 25, 2017 - 17:45

MUJU -- South Korean Olympic taekwondo champion Kim So-hui was ousted in the quarterfinals of the world championships at home on Sunday.

Kim, competing in the women's under-49kg, was one of two South Koreans to suffer early exits at the World Taekwondo Federation World Taekwondo Championships at T1 Arena inside Taekwondowon in Muju, 240 kilometers south of Seoul. Kim Hun was also eliminated in the quarterfinals of the men's under-74kg class.

Kim So-hui of South Korea (left) battles Courtney Eardley of Britain in the round of 32 match at the WTF World Taekwondo Championships at Taekwondowon's T1 Arena in Muju, North Jeolla Province, on June 25, 2017. (WTF)

Kim So-hui, the 2016 Olympic gold medalist in the 49kg, had earlier won world titles in 2011 and 2013 in the under-46kg division.

The top-seeded South Korean got off to a shaky start to her day. In the round of 32, Kim needed an extra period to defeat Courtney Eardley of Britain 4-2. In the round of 16, Kim held off Charlotte Craig of the United States 18-13.

In the quarterfinals, Wenren Yuntao, the 25th-seeded fighter from China, gave Kim all she could handle. The South Korean was nursing a 6-4 lead in the third round, but then took back-to-back "gam-jeom," or deduction penalties, to let Wenren tie the score at 6-6.

Then just five seconds into the sudden-death extra round, Wenren got her two "golden points" to beat Kim 8-6. If the score is tied after three two-minute rounds, the first athlete to score a point in the extra period is declared the winner.

Kim Hun, seeded fourth, beat Hayder Shkara of Australia 24-15 in the round of 64, and then edged out Achraf Mahboubi of Morocco 8-7 in the next match.

Kim then took down Raihau Chin of France 22-15 to reach the final eight. In the quarterfinals, though, Kim proved to be no match for Maksim Khramtcov of Russia, who manhandled him in a 27-5 victory.

Their match was called with 34 seconds left the third round on the "point gap" rule. If one athlete is up by 20 or more points through the first two rounds or at any point during the third round, that athlete is immediately declared the winner.

This was Day 2 of the biennial competition, which will wrap up on Friday. (Yonhap)