Yoon Ji-ji (30-Seoul City Hall), the eldest member of South Korea’s women’s sabre team, has had a difficult and challenging journey to win her first individual gold medal at the Asian Games in Hangzhou. The daughter of legendary KBO pitcher Yoon Hak-gil of the Lotte Giants, Yoon Ji-soo competed at the Hangzhou Asian Games as the eldest member of the women’s sabre team. She will lead the team as seniors like Kim Ji-yeon and Choi Soo-yeon leave the national team. Of the members of the women’s sabre team that won a bronze medal at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics, Yoon Ji-ji was the only one with Asian Games experience. SBS commentator Kim Ji-yeon said, “I feel sorry for the juniors because she had to leave first due to injury, but I am always grateful and trusting that Ji-soo is leading the juniors and showing good form.” Yoon Ji-soo said, “Ji-yeon told me that she cried after the semifinals, but what’s wrong with her?” She added, “Actually, it was so hard that I thought I might be depressed. When I called her, she said, ‘You’re the best,’ and that helped me a lot.”
Yoon “Akbari” Ji-soo handled all the pressure with grace. She competed alongside Jeon Eun-hye. The winner of the women’s sabre team event at the Tokyo Olympics, as well as the 2014 Incheon and 2018 Jakarta-Palembang Games, Yoon Ji-soo was eager to prove she wasn’t just a “team player” and pushed her way to the final with big moves and aggressive attacks. In the Round of 16, she faced the prospect of defeat in a close game, 12-14, but she showed incredible focus to take the next three points and turn the tables. Jeon Eun-hye lost to Xiao Yaqi (CHINA) in the round of 16.
After an easy 15-6 win over Juliette Hung (SINGAPORE) in the quarterfinals, Yoon met her fateful match in the semifinals against Zanev Dybekova (UZBEKISTAN). She won a thrilling 15-14 victory over Dybekova, who had caused her heartbreak in the round of 16 at the Tokyo Olympics. Having already secured her first career Asian Games medal by reaching the semifinals, Yun jumped out to an early lead against Xiao Yaqi. Although she allowed Xiao to catch up in the second period, she closed the gap like a veteran and eventually took the win by a score of 15-10. Standing 스포츠토토 alone on the podium, Yoon remembered her father. “I don’t often express myself because I come from a Gyeongsang-do family, but my dad (Yoon Hak-gil) is probably crying right now,” she said, “I feel like I have his athleticism and mental strength to throw the ball until the last round.”
Yoon’s challenges don’t end there. She will lead the women’s sabre team to a third consecutive sabre team title and a second individual title on Sept. 29.