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S. Korea women's handball looks for 13th Asian title at home

All Headlines 11:56 March 10, 2017

SEOUL, March 10 (Yonhap) -- The South Korean women's national handball team will compete for their 13th continental title in the Asian Women's Handball Championship set to kick off next week at home.

South Korea is the host of the 2017 Asian Women's Handball Championship that will run from Monday to March 22 in Suwon, Gyeonggi Province. This is the first time since 1995 that the country has stages the Asian event.

South Korea has been the dominant force at the Asian Championship, winning 12 times in the last 15 editions. The national team missed the finals only once since the biennial competition started in 1987.

The tournament will see eight teams divided into two groups of four. The top two teams in each group will qualify for the knockout round.

South Korea, looking for three consecutive Asian championships, is paired with China, Iran and Vietnam in Group A. Kazakhstan, Japan, Uzbekistan and Hong Kong are in Group B.

The women's team will face Vietnam to open the tournament on Monday, before taking on Iran two days later. South Korea will meet China on next Friday.

After suffering group stage elimination at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games, South Korea appointed former International Handball Federation (IHF) World Player of the Year winner Kang Jae-won as new head coach.

For Kang, this is his second stint as the women's team boss. He earlier led South Korea to semifinals at the 2012 London Olympics, but failed to win a medal.

The Asian Championship doubles as the qualifying tournament for the 2017 World Women's Handball Championship. Top three finishers will advance to the 24-team world competition in Germany in December.

In this file photo taken on Aug. 14, 2016, South Korean women's national handball team players pose for a photo after their game against Argentina at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics. (Yonhap)

kdon@yna.co.kr
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