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Unified Korean team drops 3rd straight at handball worlds

All Headlines 07:28 January 15, 2019

SEOUL, Jan. 15 (Yonhap) -- The unified Korean men's handball team has dropped its third straight game at the ongoing world championship in Germany.

Korea lost to the two-time defending champion France 34-23 in Group A action at the International Handball Federation (IHF) World Men's Handball Championship at Mercedes-Benz Arena in Berlin on Monday (local time).

In this DPA photo, Jung Su-young of Korea (C) is held by Michael Guigou (L) and Timothey N'Guessan of France during the teams' Group A match at the International Handball Federation World Men's Handball Championship at Mercedes-Benz Arena in Berlin on Jan. 14, 2019. (Yonhap)

Korea only trailed 17-16 at halftime, but France, world No. 5, outscored Korea 17-7 in the second half.

This is the first international appearance by a joint Korean handball team, men's or women's.

Korea lost to world No. 1 Germany 30-19 in the opening match last Thursday and then fell to Russia, No. 4 in the world, 34-27 on Saturday.

Korea will next face the sixth-ranked Serbia in Berlin at 6 p.m. Tuesday local time, or 2 a.m. Wednesday in Seoul.

South Korea is No. 19 in the world but North Korea isn't ranked. There are 16 South Koreans and four North Koreans on the team, coached by South Korea's Cho Young-shin.

Kang Tan, the youngest Korean player at 19, led his team with seven goals, followed by Kim Dong-myung with six. No North Korean player scored in this game. Nedim Remili led the balanced French attack with seven goals.

Germany and Denmark are co-hosts of the tournament, which wraps up on Jan. 27.

After round-robin action, the top three teams from each of the four groups will advance to the main round. Those 12 teams will then be divided into two groups of six, and the top two from each will move on to the semifinals.

South Korea failed to qualify for the past two world championships in 2015 and 2017, and finished 21st in 2013.

In this Reuters photo, Kim Dong-myung of Korea acknowledges the crowd after a 34-23 loss to France in Group A at the International Handball Federation World Men's Handball Championship at Mercedes-Benz Arena in Berlin on Jan. 14, 2019. (Yonhap)

jeeho@yna.co.kr
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