Kim Yeon-koung learning lessons from Rio


Lausanne, Switzerland, September 5, 2016 – Korea’s dreams of claiming a first Olympic medal since 1976 Montreal Games may have ended at the quarterfinal stage in Rio, but for captain and star player Kim Yeon-koung, it was an experience she will not forget in a hurry.

It was Kim’s second Olympics after London 2012, when the side narrowly missed out on bronze to Asian rivals Japan, and although that result was a disappointment, her feelings are more mixed this time around.

“I have mixed feelings about the Olympics,” Kim told JoongAng Daily. “I felt relieved and regretful at the same time. But after a while, I felt more of the former than latter. But every time I watch the Games, disappointment comes back. I watched the final match and the bronze medal match on television. The final [gold medal] match between China and Serbia was unexpected and this got me thinking about the London Games. I realized how tough it is to advance to the final four at the Olympics. We should have taken a medal from London.

“What pleased me about the Olympics was that we received so much attention before as well as after the Games. Something we did not have before.”

Kim is now set to head back to Turkey to join up with Fenerbahce, where she has been since 2011. At 28 her career is far from over. 

However, the Ansan native is already thinking beyond her playing days, and already has one aim in mind.

“I want to coach,” she said. “Coaching a team is a privilege and I would like to teach my know-how and share the experience I accumulated over the years while playing in domestic and overseas leagues.”


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