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S. Korean volleyball star Kim Yeon-koung reportedly receives offer to play in China

All News 10:59 April 16, 2020

SEOUL, April 16 (Yonhap) -- South Korean volleyball icon Kim Yeon-koung has reportedly received an offer to play in China for the second time in her illustrious career.

Citing a Brazilian report, World of Volley, a volleyball news website, said Thursday that Kim is close to returning to China with Beijing BAIC Motor.

In this file photo from Feb. 20, 2020, South Korean volleyball player Kim Yeon-koung speaks to reporters at Incheon International Airport, west of Seoul, before departing for Turkey. (Yonhap)

Kim, who's been playing with the Turkish side Eczacibasi VitrA since 2018, spent one season in the Chinese Volleyball Super League with Shanghai Bright Ubest in the 2017-2018 season. Kim's two-year deal with Eczacibasi is set to expire next month.

Kim's South Korean agency, Inspokorea, said it wasn't in a position to discuss Kim's contract situation, citing difficulties that many volleyball leagues are facing during the coronavirus pandemic.

Kim returned home from Turkey on Wednesday, with the Turkish league, like many others around the world, suspended indefinitely due to COVID-19. She had missed the late portion of the regular season while rehabbing from an abdominal injury sustained during South Korea's Olympic qualifying tournament in January. She had been set to return to action for the playoffs in late March before play was halted.

The 32-year-old outside hitter has won numerous championships and individual awards in a 15-year career with stops in South Korea, Japan, China and Turkey. She was named the MVP of the women's volleyball tournament at the 2012 London Olympics, where South Korea finished in fourth place.

In this photo provided by FIVB on Jan. 9, 2020, Kim Yeon-koung of South Korea (L) hits a spike against Alessya Safronova of Kazakhstan in their Pool B match of the Asian Olympic women's volleyball qualification tournament at Korat Chatchai Hall in Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

jeeho@yna.co.kr
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