South Korean men’s and women’s curling reach joint final at Pan American Curling Championships

South Korea’s men’s and women’s curling teams, Gangwon Provincial Government and Gyeonggi Provincial Government ‘5G’, have advanced to the playoffs (PO) of the 2023 Pan American Curling Championships.

The men’s and women’s teams have also qualified for the World Curling Championships, where they will compete for tickets to the 2026 Winter Olympics in Milan-Cortina d’Ampezzo.

The Gangwon Special Self-Governing Province men’s team secured a spot in the four-team PO with a comfortable 8-3 victory over the United States in the fifth round-robin game of the 2023 Pan American Curling Championship in Kelowna, Canada, on Sunday (Feb. 2).

The women’s national team, Gyeonggi-do ‘5G’, came from behind to win 9-8 against Canada (Team Einarson), currently ranked second in the world, and advanced to the quarterfinal PO with the USA, Canada, and Japan with a 5-1 record.

Coach Lee Ye-Jun, third Jung Young-Seok with skip Park Jong-Deok. The Korean men’s team, consisting of second Oh Seung-hoon, lead Sung Ji-hoon and fifth Lee Ki-bok, broke a 2-2 tie after four ends to take the lead with two points each in the fifth and sixth ends.

After dropping a point in the seventh end, the Koreans scored two points in the eighth end for an 8-3 victory.

Led by head coach Shin Dong-ho and consisting of skip Kim Eun-ji, third Kim Min-ji, second Kim Soo-ji, lead Seol Ye-eun, and pips Seol Ye-ji, Gyeonggi-do ‘5G’ defeated ‘nemesis’ Team Rocco Solare of Japan 8-2 in the fifth game of the preliminary round, and then faced Team Einarson of Canada in the sixth game, trailing 7-8 going into the ninth end, but scoring two points in the final 10 ends to qualify for the World Championship.

Now in its second year, the Pan-Continental Curling Championships is a round-robin format, with the top four teams from each group competing in a tournament to determine the winner.

South Korea, Australia, Canada, Taiwan, Japan, New Zealand, the United States, and Guyana are among the eight teams competing in the men’s competition, while South Korea, Australia, Canada, Taiwan, Japan, New Zealand, the United States, and Mexico are among the eight teams competing in the women’s competition.

The top five teams in each category will qualify for the 2024 World Championships.

“Our goal was to qualify for the World Championships, but the players have been working together as a team and are on a winning streak. The atmosphere is good, and we will challenge for the title.”

“I think the driving force behind our victory was playing with determination. The main thing was to play a tactic to get two points when we were behind.”

“We are emphasizing more offense, and of course the goal is to win,” said Gyeonggi-do 5G head coach Shin Dong-ho after the victory, adding, “The goal is not here. We are focused on the World Championships and the Olympics. The team atmosphere is very good,” he said, expressing confidence.

“When I was coaching them, I emphasized the atmosphere and teamwork more than anything else,” he said, adding, “They keep growing. They are 먹튀검증 growing and gaining experience,” he said of the team’s current situation.

“I want to thank the players and the coaching staff and say that even though it’s a tough training camp, we’re trying to make it as enjoyable as possible,” he concluded, “We’re having fun. If we continue to enjoy it, we will be at the top of the world,” he said.

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