Kim Woojin, An San return as Korea names team for 2023

The Korean recurve teams for 2023.

Many of the world’s best archers are in Antalya for the first stage of the 2023 Hyundai Archery World Cup – but the Korean team are home, in Wonju, wrapping up their own selections.

The second week of trials finished today, and the squad that will represent archery’s leading competitive nation on the remainder of the international circuit, at this summer’s Hyundai World Archery Championships and the Asian Games was officially announced.

Three-time World Archery Champion Kim Woojin, Lee Woo SeokKim Je Deok and the ageless Oh Jin Hyek – still deferring retirement – comprise the recurve men’s line-up, while triple Olympic gold medallist An San, veterans Kang Chae Young and Choi Misun, and newcomer Lim Sihyeon will represent the recurve women.

“When the Asian Games was postponed [to 2023], I was worried I would not make the team again,” said An San. “I’m grateful to be selected and I hope to work hard for the rest of the year. I will do my best to get good results in world championships and Asian Games.”

The 22-year-old, who is also the reigning Hyundai Archery World Cup Champion, also congratulated new teammate Lim for leading the trials leaderboard. Lim, who’s nickname translates as something close to ‘formidable’, in turn praised An San.

“I think [she] is amazing and I wanted to be like her,” she said. “Now we are both selected, I’ll try to achieve good results with her.”

Kim Sihyeon during Korean selections.

It’s presumed that the fourth listed archers after trials – Oh Jin Hyek and Choi Misun – will miss out on this summer’s world championships, at which only three archers per category are permitted to compete.

London 2012 Olympic Champion Jin Hyek, now a player-coach for the Hyundai Steel pro team, enters the season aged 41.

“I wanted to test my competitiveness as there are a lot of talented younger archers now,” he said. “I had an opportunity to go for it. I wanted it, but I tried to take it easy throughout the entire process, including winter training.”

“I’m still thinking about retirement, so I didn’t put much pressure on myself.”

Kim Je Deok, now 18, recently joined a professional team after graduating high school – rather than joining a university squad.

Former Olympic Champion Ki Bo Bae finished out of the top four in the trials and will remain a squad member, rather than representing the top team.

The Reo Wilde-led compound squads include former world champions Kim Jongho and Song Yun Soo. Kang Donghyeon, the first amateur archer to make a Korean squad, missed out on the team on the result of a single arrow.

Korean team for 2023

*Expected reserve for 2023 Hyundai World Archery Championships.

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