TOKYO / SEOUL, Aug. 05 (Yonhap) – The modern pentathlon competition for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games kicks off this Thursday as 26-year-old South Korean athlete Jun Woong-tae prepares to set out to conquer the ‘a medal in this event little known to Koreans.
Modern pentathlon is a combination of fencing, swimming, horse riding, pistol shooting and running. The fencing matches will begin this Thursday. So far, no athlete in the country has won an Olympic medal in this discipline.
Jun, who finished 19th at the Rio Olympics in 2016, stood out during the 2018 season by becoming the world number one in the ranking of the International Modern Pentathlon Union (UIPM) and won a ticket to the Olympic Games in taking bronze in the individual event at the 2019 world championship.
Despite the cancellation of major sporting events around the world due to the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic last year, Jun won the World Cup in April in Bulgaria, leaving behind other contenders for Olympic medals like Joseph Choong of Great Britain and Hungarian Adam Marosi, the world number one.
In baseball, South Korea will face the United States in the draft tonight and will once again try to secure a ticket to the final of the Olympic tournament. A victory would lead to another meeting against Japan for the gold medal on Saturday after losing in the semi-finals yesterday. If the South Koreans lose today, they will play the bronze medal game against the Dominican Republic.
The South Korean baseball team was Olympic champion in Beijing in 2008 and baseball was not on the Olympic program in the two previous editions.