Many fall in love at a badminton court; South Korean players Son Wan Ho and Sung Ji Hyun are one of them. The two lovers planned to tie the knot after the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, but due to the postponement of the Olympics, they have decided to get married in December this year. Sung hopes to collect enough qualifying points to compete alongside Son at the Olympics.
Son Wan Ho suffered a serious injury in the left Achilles tendon while competing against Lee Hyun Il in the Spring Team Championships, one of the biggest local tournaments in South Korea. He was sidelined for 7 months. Sportssina quoted Son recalling the incident, ” I didn’t expect it to be that serious, and there was still some time until the Olympics. And other players return to court all the time after an Achilles tendon rupture.”
On the day Son was injured, his mother was watching him live in the stadium. He recounted, “She saw my injury with her own eyes and she got so sad that she burst into tears. I calmed her down and said it was okay.”
Sung Ji Hyun also shared how shocked she was and filled with sadness when she heard the news of the injury, “It was only him (Son) who looked calm, everyone else around him was half scared to death- parents and coaches too. He was so calm, I wondered if he was really injured.”
With the postponement of the Tokyo Olympics, Son Wan Ho feels lucky. He has plenty of time to recuperate and collect Olympic qualifying points. At the moment Son is ranked 51 in qualification rankings and has not yet qualified to compete in the Olympics.
The delay in the Olympics is proving to be increasingly difficult for older players like Sung Ji Hyun. In fact, this might be the last Olympics for Sung who is 28. She is currently ranked 15th in the Olympic qualifications rankings, behind teammates An Se Young (8th) and Kim Ga Eun (14th). To qualify for the Olympics, she must surpass Kim’s ranking and stay in the top 16.
She showed her conviction to qualify for the Olympics by saying, “Whatever the outcome, I will prepare well.”