Notable Korean Athletes From 2014 Incheon Asian Games

kpopluv, Oct. 6, 2014, 9:30 a.m.


The 2014 Asian Games in Incheon came to an end after 16 days of competition with a lavish closing ceremony at the Incheon Asiad main stadium on Saturday.  South Korea finished second in the medals table for the fifth consecutive time, winning 79 gold, 71 silver and 84 bronze medals. China had a long lead with 151 gold, 108 silver, and 83 bronze, and Japan came third with 47 gold, 76 silver and 77 bronze. 



Japanese swimmer Kosuke Hagino was named as the Most Valuable Player of the Games. He won seven medals, four of them gold. He was the surprise winner of the men's 200-m freestyle, edging out heavy favorites Park Tae-hwan of South Korea and Sun Yang of China. 

Hagino also won the 200-m and 400-m individual medleys and 4x200-m freestyle relay. He took silver in the 400-m freestyle and bronze in the 100-m and 200-m backstroke.

Rim Chang-woo, who plays for Daejeon Citizen in K League Challenge, the second tier league in Korea, was another surprise star. The South Korean men's football team took gold in the Asiad for the first time in 28 years, and he is the only player in the team from the second-tier league. 

Rim scored Korea's first goal of the competition against Malaysia, and a dramatic clincher just before the end of extra time in the final match against North Korea.

Rhythmic gymnast Son Yeon-jae, who was touted as the most promising Korean athlete in a poll just before the Asian Games kicked off, became the first Korean to win gold in rhythmic gymnastics in the Asian Games. 

Superstars like Park Tae-hwan and gymnast Yang Hak-seon failed to win gold, though Park scored one silver and five bronze in Incheon to set the new national record for winning 20 career Asian Games medals. Yang won silver in vault. 

Incheon saw 17 new world records and 34 Asian records, including four tying the existing record, much more than at the last Asiad in Guangzhou in 2010. 

The next Asian Games will be held in Jakarta, Indonesia in four years.

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