3 consecutive wins after 2 losses… Korean tennis, another round of 16 drama

It started at 11am and ended at 6pm. Korean men’s tennis uses a band electrode to step on the stage of the Davis Cup Finals (R16) for the second year in a row. The men’s national tennis team led by coach Park Seung-gyu gave up all two singles matches on the first day in the 2023 Davis Cup qualifiers (4 singles and 1 doubles) against powerful Belgium on the indoor court at Olympic Park in Songpa-gu, Seoul on the 4th and 5th, but on the second day, the 5th, doubles and He captured both singles matches and wrote a dramatic comeback drama of 3 wins and 2 losses.

The Davis Cup is the world’s most prestigious men’s national tennis competition that began in 1900 and is also called the ‘Tennis World Cup’. Korea is the fifth and first time in history to step on the stage of the finals, where the round of 16 competes twice in a row, following 1981, 1987, 2007, and 2022. The Davis Cup Finals group stage will be held in September. In last year’s finals group stage, Korea was placed in the same group as Spain, Canada, and Serbia, and failed to advance to the quarterfinals after losing all three matches.

The prelude to the drama overturning the previous day’s 2 losses
The Davis Cup qualifying round will be a total of five matches over two days, including two singles matches on the first day and one doubles match and two singles matches on the second day. Korea gave up all of the two singles matches held on the 4th. Kwon Soon-woo (26), ranked 61st in the singles world, lost 1-2 to Jiju Berris, who ranked 115th, and Hong Seong-chan (26, 237th) was also beaten 0-2 by Belgian ace David Gopin (41st). Korea was in a situation where joining the finals would be canceled even if it gave up just one game that day.

It was Song Min-gyu (33, 147th in doubles) and Nam Ji-seong (30, 152nd in doubles), the “brothers”, who saved Korea from the brink. Song Min-gyu and Nam Ji-seong played a pair of Yoran Bligen (53rd in doubles) and Zander Jill (55th in doubles), who had a much higher world ranking in doubles, with a set score of 2-0 (7-6<7-3> 7-6<7-5>). ) was suppressed. In both sets, neither side gave up a single serve game, and the atmosphere turned around by catching both tie-breaks.

Song Min-gyu, who laid the foundation for the reversal, said, “It seems that we were split in the last difference in concentration, such as taking the initiative in the tie-break,” and added, “We did our part. I will believe in my younger brothers and cheer them on from the bench.”

And really, the ‘older brothers’ gave strength. In the third match of the singles that followed, each team’s ‘ace’ Kwon Soon-woo and Gopin came forward. Gopin is a strong player who rose to 7th in the world in 2017. Kwon Soon-woo put in 11 serve aces with a maximum speed of 204 km/h, and defeated Gopin 2-1 (3-6 6-1 6-3) with his long-term drop shot. Gopin showed a nervous reaction by deliberately hitting the ball toward the signboard when the flow was taken away in the third set. Kwon Soon-woo said, “I think I played comfortably because my brothers started well.”

Hong Seong-chan completes Underdog’s Rebellion
Hong Seong-chan was the player who put an end to the match in a situation where the match was quickly equalized with 2 wins and 2 losses. In the last game, Hong Seong-chan defeated Berris, who was 122 steps higher than himself, 2-0 (6-3 7-6 <7-4>), giving Korea a dramatic come-from-behind victory. Hong Seong-chan, like a defensive player, persistently received Berris’ attacks throughout the game and induced Berris to make mistakes. As a result, Berris committed a whopping 51 mistakes (Hong Seong-chan 21) and collapsed on his own. Berris threw his racquet to the floor when the ball was caught in the net in the first set. 안전놀이터

Hong Seong-chan said, “I didn’t have to die, so I went into the game with confidence.”

Coach Park, who advanced to the finals for the second time in a row following last year, said, “I lost both games yesterday, but I talked to the players, ‘Let’s do our best until the end'” and added, “It’s really like a dream. Thank you to the players who did their best until the end without giving up. I don’t even know how to say it.”

On this day, domestic tennis fans who filled the stadium with a capacity of 1,000 people cheered up the atmosphere by shouting “fighting Korea” and “let’s go to the round of 16” whenever Korean players scored.

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