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8 nat'l handball players suspended for drinking at training facility

All Headlines 10:44 October 02, 2019

SEOUL, Oct. 2 (Yonhap) -- Eight members of the South Korean men's handball team have been suspended for two months for drinking inside their national training facility.

The Korea Handball Federation (KHF) announced the punishment against the players on Wednesday and added that head coach Cho Young-shin stepped down to take responsibility for the incident that took place in August at the Jincheon National Training Center in Jincheon, 90 kilometers south of Seoul.

This undated file photo shows the sign at the Jincheon National Training Center in Jincheon, 90 kilometers south of Seoul. (Yonhap)

Drinking is prohibited for athletes at the Jincheon facility. According to national team officials, the suspended players, most of whom are national team mainstays, had beers in their dormitory after returning from a European training camp to beat their jet lag.

The KHF said assistant coach Kang Il-koo will take over as the new bench boss, and he'll have to guide a gutted team to the Asian qualifying tournament for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics starting on Oct. 17 in Qatar.

South Korea, currently world No. 19, didn't qualify for the previous Olympics in 2016. Only the winner of the Asian qualifying event will punch a ticket to Tokyo. Other teams in the qualifying event are Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, Kazakhstan, China and the United Arab Emirates.

In August, five male South Korean speed skaters, including two Olympic medalists, received a six-month ban from the Korean Sport & Olympic Committee (KSOC) for also drinking at the Taeneung National Training Center in Seoul.

jeeho@yna.co.kr
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