Shy teenager Kim Cheong-Yong beat the Olympic and world champion Jin Jong-Oh as South Korea swept the men’s 10-metre air pistol titles at the Asian Games on Sunday (Sep 21).
Incheon, South Korea (Channel News Asia): Shy teenager Kim Cheong-Yong beat the Olympic and world champion as South Korea swept the men’s 10-metre air pistol titles at the Asian Games on Sunday (Sep 21). The 17-year-old beat a star-studded field in the eight-man final to claim the individual crown to thunderous applause from home fans.
Kim’s hero, South Korea’s Olympic and world champion Jin Jong-Oh, was relegated to third place behind former Olympic gold medallist Pang Wei of China. Kim, a Seoul high school student, finished with a score of 201.2, just ahead of Pang on 199.3 and way ahead of Jin’s tally of 179.3.
Defending champion Lee Daem-Yung finished 13th in qualifying and failed to make the final. India’s Jitu Rai, who won the 50m air pistol title on Sunday, was fifth.
With the team title also in the bag, the hotly favoured hosts finally made a mark on the Incheon ranges after a miserable opening day when China’s pistol shooters won three golds and India the other.
On Sunday, China ended defending champion Kuwait’s reign in the trap event by winning both the team gold and the individual title through Gao Bo. The Chinese trio of Du Yu, Zhang Yiyao and Gao edged out Kuwait by three shots, winning 357-354, while South Korea claimed the bronze.
Gao then overcame London Olympics bronze-medallist Fehaid Aldeehani 15-12 in the individual final. Andrey Mogilevskiy took the bronze with a 14-8 win over El Najjar Walid of Lebanon. But it was Kim who stole the limelight in the first sign that young blood was ready to take over the mantle from the established stars.
Kim, virtually unknown before this year, first came to attention when he finished second at the Youth Olympics in Nanjing in August. The youngster, hesitantly addressing his first press conference, said competing with other countries in Nanjing gave him hope of doing well at the Asian Games.
He said: “My hero Jin was there as were the Chinese, so I knew it would not be easy, but I had confidence in my game. Winning the Asiad title is really a dream come true. It was some luck and the blessings of all Koreans that saw me through. There is still a lot to learn from the senior shooters. I just try and follow their advice and see how they train.”
Jin said he was “sad” at not winning the title, but was happy for his compatriot who was a “very promising talent”. Kim, Jin and Lee Daem-Yung retained the team gold for South Korea earlier.
China claimed the silver through Pang, Pu Qifeng and Wang Zhiwei, beating India by one point on the count of inner 10s after both teams were level at 1,743. There was further heartbreak for India when former Commonwealth Games champion Samaresh Jung finished ninth and did not make the final.
Of the eight titles contested so far in the 44-event shooting competition, China have won five golds, South Korea two and India one.