Korean rugby, which competed in the Olympic finals for the first time in history, wrote a new history against the world’s strongest New Zealander.
Ace Jeong Yeon-sik scored a miraculous goal
The match ended up losing 5-50.
New record challenge in the second match against Australia
The Korean rugby team lost to New Zealand 5-50 (5-14 in the first half, 0-36 in the second half) in the first match of Group A of the 7-man rugby group at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics held at Tokyo Stadium in Japan on the 26th. New Zealand, dubbed the ‘All Blacks’ (the nickname of the New Zealand national team that unifies the tops and bottoms and socks), is the world’s second-largest gold medal candidate. Korea is ranked 31st.
Although they lost heavily to New Zealand, Korean rugby set a historic record in their Olympic debut. It’s the first Olympic goal. Korea national team ace Jeong Yeon-sik (28) received a pass from Yong-heung Jang (28) at 5:48 in the first half after falling 0-7, and rushed into the empty spot on the right side of the ground. He slammed the ball into the opposing team’s goal line and succeeded in ‘trying’ to score 5 points.
It was a ‘miracle try’ made by an unknown player in a rugby wasteland against the world’s strongest team. New Zealand has 160,000 registered athletes out of a population of 5 million. The Korean players hugged and rejoiced as if they had won a gold medal. Rugby officials around the world in the stadium jumped up from their seats and clapped. Choi Yun, the president of the Rugby Association, who visited the stadium as the vice-chief of the Korean team at the Tokyo Olympics, also applauded with a happy expression.
Korea, which has grown in momentum, also had a chance to score additional goals. Jeong Yeon-sik broke down the defensive wall in 5-14 and advanced near the goal line, but unfortunately the goal was canceled as he tripped over the opponent team’s tackle. From then on, New Zealand players, who had been relaxed, began to get nervous. Korea was biting the opponent until the end, but could not overcome the difference in physical strength and skill with New Zealand. New Zealand were knocked down by conceding a try and a conversion kick (bonus kick) in a row.
The challenge of Korean rugby continues. Park Wan-yong (38), captain of the Korean national team, said, “I want to surprise the world with Korean rugby in Tokyo, just like in the 2002 Korea-Japan World Cup. Since everything is the first time, I will do my best, thinking that a new history is written every time we step on the ground. Please support us a lot. I will,” he said. Korea will play the second game against Australia at 6 pm.
Rugby, which was pushed out of the official sport after the 1924 Paris Olympics, returned to the 2016 Rio Olympics after 92 years. Rugby is a sport in which the ball is lifted and the ball breaks through to the opponent’s goal point in a stadium similar to a soccer field. The duration of the game is 7 minutes in the first half and one minute in the second half. The reason why the game time is shorter than other ball sports is that the fights are tough and a small number of people have to go back and forth without a break. There are no strikers and defenders, so they are active enough to run 3-4km in 14 minutes.
By Pi Joo-young, staff reporter [email protected]