After 17 years without an Asian Games medal, the South Korean women’s volleyball team has avoided the worst. They defeated Kazakhstan in the fifth-to-eighth place match to advance to the fifth-to-sixth place match. After failing to advance to the quarterfinals, head coach Cesar Gonzalez said, “We’re going for the highest possible fifth place.”
On Saturday, the women’s volleyball team swept Kazakhstan 3-0 (25-18, 25-18, 25-16) in straight sets to advance to the fifth-place match at the Duching Sports Center in Huzhou, Zhejiang Province, China. The winner of the Taiwan-North Korea match will play the winner of the fifth place match in the final match of the seven-day tournament.
South Korea is ranked 40th in the world, lower than Kazakhstan (32nd), and is coming off a loss in the fifth and sixth place matches at the 2023 Asian Championships last month.
South Korea surrendered an early lead to Kazakhstan in the first set, but fought back with the help of Kang So-hwi (GS Caltex) and Lee Da-hyun (Hyundai E&C). After taking the first set 25-18, the Koreans used the momentum to take the second set 25-18 and then the third set 25-16 to secure the shutout victory.
Lee Da-hyun led the way with 14 points, including three service aces and four blocks, and Park Eun-jin (Jeonggwanjang) had 11 points, while Kang So-hwi (13 digs) and Pyo Seung-joo (IBK) (9 digs) also contributed. They also led in service aces (6-1) and blocks (11-9) to secure a comfortable victory.
The women’s volleyball team attempted to win a medal at the tournament, but came up short, finishing third in their quarterfinal group. After falling to Vietnam in Pool C, Korea entered the quarterfinals with one loss, but a 0-3 defeat to China in their first match of the quarterfinals ended their hopes of advancing to the semifinals 토토사이트.
It was the first time in 17 years that South Korea had not won an Asian Games medal since Doha 2006 (fifth place). It was only the second time since volleyball became an official sport at the 1962 Games in Jakarta. At least the fifth-place finish averted the first threat of finishing with the lowest ranking ever. However, a loss in the fifth-place match would have resulted in the lowest-ever ranking after a gold medal.