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Hwang Sun-woo wins 1st gold at short course worlds

All News 11:31 December 18, 2021

SEOUL, Dec. 18 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's teen swimming sensation Hwang Sun-woo has won his first gold medal at the world's top short course competition.

The South Korean swimmer won the men's 200-meter freestyle at the FINA World Short Course Swimming Championships in Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates, on Friday (local time), with a time of 1 minute, 41.60 seconds.

Aleksandr Shchegolev from the Russian federation finished second at 1:41:63 and Danas Rapsys from Lithuania placed third at 1:41:73.

South Korea's teen swimmer Hwang Sun-woo poses after winning gold in the men's 200-meter freestyle at the FINA World Short Course Swimming Championships in Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates, on Dec. 17, 2021, in this photo provided by the Korea Swimming Federation. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

It is Hwang's first gold medal at a major international competition, after making an impressive debut at this year's Tokyo Olympics.

The 18-year-old finished fifth in the 100m and seventh in the 200m final at Tokyo, setting several records along the way, including an Asian record in the 100m during the semifinals. He was the first South Korean swimmer since Park Tae-hwan to reach an Olympic final race.

He also became the first South Korean to win a medal at the short course worlds that take place in 25m pools, half the length of the regular-sized pools at the Olympics and other international competitions, after Park.

Park, the legendary swimming star who is the only South Korean Olympic gold medalist in swimming, captured three golds at the short course worlds in 2016.

Hwang is also scheduled to compete in the men's 100m individual medley and 100m freestyle races in Abu Dhabi.

"I'm so pleased that I earned gold at my first race in the short course worlds," he said through the Korea Swimming Federation. "I'll do my best at the upcoming 100m individual medley and 100m freestyle races."

In this AP photo, South Korean Hwang Sun-woo (C) stands at the podium with Aleksandr Shchegolev of Russia (L) and Danas Rapsys of Lithuania (R) after the 200-meter freestyle during the FINA World Short Course Swimming Championships in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, on Dec. 17, 2021. (Yonhap)

brk@yna.co.kr
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