SPORTS

[PyeongChang 2018] S. Korean bobsledder, N. Korean hockey player to carry flag together at opening ceremony

By Yonhap
  • Published : Feb 9, 2018 - 15:30
  • Updated : Feb 9, 2018 - 15:30

PYEONGCHANG, Gangwon Province -- South Korean male bobsledder Won Yun-jong and North Korean women's hockey player Hwang Chung-gum will carry the Korean Unification Flag together at the opening ceremony of the PyeongChang Winter Games on Friday.

PyeongChang's organizing committee unveiled the list of all flagbearers for the ceremony, set to start at 8 p.m. Friday at PyeongChang Olympic Stadium. Won was selected as the South Korean bearer earlier this week, and Hwang was announced as the North Korean representative.

South Korean bobsleigh pilot Won Yun-jong speaks to reporters after Team Korea`s launching ceremony in Seoul on Jan. 24. (Yonhap)

The Koreas agreed to the joint march at the opening ceremony last month. In approving this agreement, the International Olympic Committee said on Jan. 20 that the Korean athletes and officials will march behind the Korean Unification Flag -- a blue Korean Peninsula against a white background.

This will be the fourth joint Korean march at an Olympic Games, and the first since Torino 2006.

There are 92 nations participating in PyeongChang 2018, and by custom, the host nation will march in last. And because the two Koreas have been combined for the occasion, the single Korean delegation will be the 91st to enter the main stadium.

Won is a pilot for both the two-man and four-man bobsleigh team. He and his brakeman, Seo Young-woo, topped the world rankings in the 2015-16 season.

This photo provided by the Korea Ice Hockey Association shows North Korean player Hwang Chung-gum. (Yonhap)

Hwang is one of 12 North Koreans named to the historic joint women's hockey team. There are 23 South Korean players too, but only 22 players -- 20 skaters and two goalies -- can dress for each game during the Olympics.

Under the IOC terms, at least three of those 22 must be North Koreans. When the joint team played its first game against Sweden last Sunday, Hwang was one of four North Koreans in the lineup.

South Korea has 144 athletes in total, its largest delegation for a Winter Olympics, while North Korea also brought in its Winter Games' record of 22 athletes. (Yonhap)