Jeoung Youngsik Withdraws From 2021 Korean National Team

Korean media has reported that Jeoung Youngsik (WR 13) has withdrawn from the Korean National Team for the remainder of 2021, meaning he will not play in the upcoming WTT event in Doha in September or the World Championships in November. The stated reason for the withdrawal is to give the younger players a chance.

Korean Table Tennis Executive director Kim Taek-Soo hinted at a disappointing performance by Jeoung at Tokyo as a reason for the withdrawal, but on the surface Jeoung’s results at Tokyo appear to be quite decent. Jeoung outperformed his seeding in the men’s singles event by defeating Timo Boll in the round of 16 before losing to Fan Zhendong 4-0 in the quarter-finals. Jeoung also won all his singles matches in the team event, including a 3-0 win over Koki Niwa in the bronze medal match. However, Jeoung lost both his doubles matches in the bronze medal match and the semi-finals, and he did not play singles against China.

Given Jeoung’s performance at the Olympics, it is possible that Kim’s comments hint that merely beating the non-Chinese competition and getting crushed by the Chinese is not a satisfactory result, and that Korea is setting its ambitions on defeating China.

A translation of the full article is provided below:

Veteran table tennis star Jung Young-sik (29, Mirae Asset Securities) made a big concession. He announced that he would temporarily suspend his national team activities, saying, “I will give my juniors a chance.” He also expressed his intention to return with a new image next year.

Jung Young-sik recently sent a long message to the executives and leaders of the Korea Table Tennis Association, saying that he would not participate in the September Asian Table Tennis Championships (September 28-10.5, Doha, Qatar) and the November World Table Tennis Championships (November 23-11.29, Houston, USA). He has already received automatic qualification for two tournaments as he is ranked second in the world rankings in Korea.

In this regard, Kim Taek-soo, executive director of the Korea Table Tennis Association, who is the head coach of the team under Jeong Young-sik, said in a phone call with Sports Seoul, “Jung Young-sik was chosen as a recommended player for the Tokyo Olympics, and I have felt a lot of pressure from people around me talking about it. It was even more difficult because the results at the Olympics were not good,” he explained.

Jung Young-sik

Executive Director Kim continued, “Jung Young-sik received an automatic entry to the remaining two international competitions this year, adding to the psychological and physical pressure. So, for the sake of Korean table tennis, for the sake of our juniors, I will make concessions this time,” and “I will improve physically and technically and become the national representative fairly from next year,” he said.

At the start of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, Jung Young-sik placed third behind Lee Sang-soo (31, Samsung Life Insurance) and Ahn Jae-hyun (22, Samsung Life Insurance) in the qualifying event for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games earlier this year, but overtook Ahn Jae-hyun, who placed 2nd place, to get the right to participate in the Olympics as a recommended athlete. He also participated in the men’s singles event. However, the Korean men’s team failed to win medals in the individual and team events.

Jung Young-sik was suddenly removed from the national team, so some changes are inevitable in the Korean team’s entry for this year’s international competition. In particular, Jung Young-sik and Lee Sang-soo, who have been working together for a long time in men’s doubles, suffered a lot of damage.

In this regard, the Table Tennis Association held the Performance Improvement Committee (Chairperson Kim Taek-su) again on the 23rd and decided to send Seung-min Cho (23, Armed Forces Athletic Corps) to the Asian Championships and Min-ha Hwang (22, Mirae Asset Securities) to the World Championships as a substitute for Jung Young-sik in the men’s singles.

There was a change in men’s doubles and mixed doubles. At the Asian Championships, Woojin Jang and Jonghoon Lim and Jaehyun Ahn and Seungmin Cho were selected for the men’s doubles, and Jun Jihee and Yubin Shin, Hyojoo Choi and Shion Choi were selected in the women’s doubles, and Woojin Jang and Jeon Jihee and Ahn Jaehyun and Yubin Shin were selected for the mixed doubles event. At the World Championships, Jang Woo-jin and Im Jong-hoon, Ahn Jae-hyun and Cho Dae-seong, Jeon Ji-hee-Shin Yu-bin and Choi Hyo-joo-Lee Si-on in the men’s doubles, and Jang Woo-jin-Jeon Ji-hee and Cho Dae-seong-Shin Yu-bin in the mixed doubles.

Regarding the subtraction of Lee Sang-soo, Jeon Ji-hee’s partner, from mixed doubles, Kim Taek-soo said, “I was looking forward to it, but the result was disappointing. It was decided by the performance improvement committee to give a new change.”

The men’s singles members participating in the World Championships in November were finally confirmed as five men, including Woojin Jang (Mirae Asset Securities), Sangsu Lee, Jonghoon Lim (KGC Ginseng Corporation), Jaehyun Ahn, and Minha Hwang, who obtained automatic entry rights. Woman Jeon Jihee (POSCO Energy), Suh Hyo-won (Korea Racing Association), Shin Yubin (KAL), Choi Hyojoo (Samsung Life), 5 people including Lee Zion (Samsung Life).

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