Korea women’s handball loses to Japan…first ‘no gold’ in handball history

The South Korean women’s handball team fell short of a third consecutive Asian Games title with a loss to Japan.

South Korea, coached by Henrik Signell (SWE), lost 19-29 to Japan in the women’s handball final of the Hangzhou 2022 Asian Games at the Zhejiang Gongsang University Gymnasium in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, China, on Friday.

South Korea, which was seeking its third consecutive Asian Games title after winning in Incheon in 2014 and Jakarta-Palembang in 2018, ended the tournament with a silver medal.

In the nine editions since women’s handball became an Asian Games program in Beijing in 1990, South Korea has not won the title in Guangzhou in 2010 and this one.

South Korea lost to Japan in the quarterfinals of the 2010 Guangzhou Games, with China winning the gold medal.

It has been 11 years since Korea lost to Japan in a women’s national handball match since the 2012 Japan-Korea Friendlies.

However, since Korea sent a junior team to the 2012 Korea-Japan match, it was the first time in 13 years since the semifinals of the 2010 Guangzhou Asian Games that Korea had lost a match against a full adult team.

It was also the first time Korean handball failed to win a gold medal at an Asian Games since Beijing 1990, when women’s handball became an official sport.

The only other time the women failed to win a gold medal was in Guangzhou in 2010, when the men won, and the men didn’t even make it to the quarterfinals.

Trailing by six goals, 8-14, at the end of the first half, South Korea had a chance to pull back to 10-15 early in the second, but consecutive goals from Chikako Kasai, Saki Hatori and Naoko Sahara cut the deficit to eight points.

Japan’s fast-paced offense proved to be powerful, while our players’ good chances were repeatedly blocked by Japanese goalkeeper Atsuko Baba.

Korea overcame a six-goal deficit to win the Asian Championship final against Japan in Seoul last November, and they also overcame a 0-5 deficit in the final of the Paris 2024 Olympic Games Asian Regional Qualifier in Japan in August this year, but this time they were unable to overturn a bad start.

The women’s handball team, a clear gold medal favorite at the Games, also lost to Japan, continuing the poor performance of other team sports at the Hangzhou Asian Games, including basketball and volleyball.

Korea’s offense was unable to get going as Ryu Eun-hee (Hungary Gyori) and Kim Bo-eun (Samcheok City Hall) scored three goals for the team. 파워볼분석

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