Surprise Korean trial winners head to Suzhou
Youthful Team Minji oust Olympic silver medallists in team trials
Korea have revealed the women’s and mixed doubles rinks that will make the short trip over the East China Sea to Suzhou for the first leg of the Curling World Cup.
The Korean Curling Federation held trials last week to decide which teams would participate in the inaugural four-leg series, which begins on 12 September at Suzhou Sports Centre, 100km from Shanghai.
It was the youthful Team Minji who surprisingly overcame shock Olympic silver medallists Team Eunjung, the so-called ‘Garlic Girls’ whose unexpected run to the final captured the public imagination in Pyeongchang earlier this year.
Team Minji, the 2016 World Junior Championship bronze medallists, are made up of skip Minji Kim, third Hyerin Kim, second Taei Yang and lead Sujin Kim, with Sungjun Lee as coach.
The rink, based in Chuncheon City, warmed up perfectly for the Curling World Cup opener in under two weeks by winning the season-opening Hokkaido Bank Curling Classic, beating Japan’s Team Matsumara in the final in Sapporo.
Korea will be represented in the mixed doubles by Jang Hyeri and Chiwon Choi. It will be the first time the pair will team up on a world stage in Suzhou.