The Korean women’s national softball team to participate in the Asian Games has been confirmed.
The Korea Baseball Softball Association 메이저놀이터 (hereinafter referred to as the ‘association’) released a press release on the 28th saying, “17 national softball players participating in the 19th Asian Games to be held in Hangzhou, China from September 26th to October 2nd. has been confirmed.” Young players who played an active role in the Canada Cup, Asia Cup, and women’s college softball competitions were the main players, and veteran players who could support these players joined. All of these results were expected.
The most notable one is the joining of Hong Si-yeon (23, Daegu City Corporation), the fourth hitter who played a prominent role in the University Asia Cup. She is a talented person who can double as a two-hitter, and once entered the national team as a pitcher. Last year’s ‘Baseball Softball Night’ awardees, including Gyeongnam Sports Association pitcher Kwon Hee-hee, Incheon Metropolitan City Sports Association Lee Gyeong-min, and Dankook University batting machine Park Min-kyung, also joined the national team without difficulty.
In addition, Bae Yoo-ga (34), a Korean-Japanese who is still playing active duty, was selected for the national team three times in a row, and Lee Min-jung (Daegu Urban Development Corporation), who returned from injury, joined the team. These two veterans are expected to be a great help to the national team, which is dominated by young players.
The national team, which left for field training in Japan this year, invited former Japanese national softball coach Rei Nishiyama for professional defense training at the time, and sweated hard for the first medal in softball at the Asian Games.
National team coach Noh Jong-woo said, “It is a great honor to be able to represent Korea in the Hangzhou Asian Games wearing the Taegeuk mark. I will show you a great game where I pour everything so that my efforts are not in vain.”
The national team players will be convened on September 3 and will depart for Hangzhou, China after training until the 23rd. Until departure, Vice President Kim Eun-young of the association will be in charge of softball and will actively support the players.
Currently, women’s softball is ranked 34th in the world, and in Asia, it is ranked 5th after Japan (2nd), Taiwan (4th), China (11th) and the Philippines (21st). In order for the national team to aim for the bronze medal, they must beat the home teams China and the Philippines.
Softball, which was adopted as an official sport at the 1990 Asian Games in Beijing, has dominated the gold/silver/bronze medals in Asia. From 1990 to 1998, China won three consecutive softball championships, and from 2002 to 2018, Japan has won five consecutive championships. Apart from these three countries, no Asian country has won a medal. In the 8 Asian Games, Japan won 5 gold medals and 3 silver medals, and China won 3 gold medals, 2 silver medals, and 3 bronze medals. Taiwan won 4 silver medals and 4 bronze medals without a gold medal.