Olympics dream ends as Thai spikers lose to South Korea

Olympics dream ends as Thai spikers lose to South Korea

Kim Yeon Koung of South Korea overpowers Thai volleyball team members in the final of the Asian Olympic qualification tournament in Nakhon Ratchasima on Sunday. (FIVB photo)
Kim Yeon Koung of South Korea overpowers Thai volleyball team members in the final of the Asian Olympic qualification tournament in Nakhon Ratchasima on Sunday. (FIVB photo)

Hopes of a first Olympics appearance for the Thai women’s volleyball team ended on Sunday with a defeat by South Korea.

The South Koreans overpowered Thailand 3-0 (25-22, 25-20, 25-20) in the decider of the Asian Olympic qualification tournament in front of a packed Chatchai Hall in Nakhon Ratchasima.

The Koreans' stiff defence and decisive offence throughout the 75-minute match proved too strong for their hosts, ending the Thai spikers' hopes to earn the last spot in the Tokyo Olympics.  

Tichakorn Boonlert top-scored with 24 points, followed by Yupa Sanitklang with 22 points. Lee Jaeyeong and Kim Yoen Koung led their teams with 18 points each.

Thailand set up the showdown after defeating Kazakhstan, while South Korea defeated Taiwan in the semi-finals on Saturday.

The winner from the Asian qualification event will join four winners from the Europe, North America, South America and Africa qualifying tournaments in Tokyo.

Japan have automatically qualified as hosts while Serbia, China, the United States, Brazil, Russia and Italy have booked their Tokyo tickets after winning intercontinental qualifiers in August last year.


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