Kim So-young, Gong Hee-yong win bronze in badminton women’s doubles after battling through injury
Badminton pair Kim So-young (Incheon International Airport) and Gong Hee-yong (Jeonbuk Bank) battled back from injury to win a bronze medal at the Hangzhou 2022 Asian Games, according to Yonhap News Agency.
Kim So-young and Gong Hee-yong (World No. 3) lost 1-2 (21-16 9-21 12-21) to World No. 1 Chen Qingcheng and Zhai Fan (China) in the women’s doubles quarterfinals on Saturday at Binjiang Gymnasium in Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province, China.
Kim So-young and Gong Hee-yong’s concentration shone in the first set.
At 17-16, Gong Hee-yong used her body-forward defense to catch a strong smash and draw her opponent’s error.
The Chinese zaipan then misjudged the line and swung in vain, while Kim read her opponent’s shaky serve correctly.
But the tide swung sharply in China’s favor in the second set.
Kim, who injured her right calf in training last month, appeared to be struggling with the aftermath of the injury and was seen trying to help her partner Gong Hee-yong cover the court too much.
The Koreans, who went into the interval down 8-11 in the second set, conceded nine straight points after the match resumed.
It was a similar story in the third set.
With the score at 3-5, Kim So-young asked the referee to give her right calf a quick medical treatment.
After the break, Kim So-young and Gong Hee-yong showed great defense and exquisite net play in the ensuing rally to pull within one point.
However, the Chinese team also took a medical break to turn the tide again and eventually won the match with six consecutive points.
“It’s unfortunate to think that we lost, but I’m glad that we played one game safely and won a valuable bronze medal,” said Kim So-young after the match.
“This is not the end, but the halfway point to our goal (Paris Olympics),” said a red-eyed Kim. “If I don’t get sick and prepare well, I can bring home a different color medal from last year’s Tokyo Olympics (bronze),” she said confidently.
“I’m grateful to my sister for running hard despite being sick,” Gong Hee-yong said, adding, “I should have done better, but I have a lot of regrets that I didn’t.” 슬롯