Korea's Kim Jang Mi of Korea smiles afte receiving her gold medal of the 10m air pistol girls' shooting competition of the Singapore 2010 Youth Olympic Games (YOG) at the Singapore Sports School, Aug 23, 2010. She scored a combined total of 479.2. Photo: SPH-SYOGOC/Mike Lee
Singapore is a happy hunting ground for Korean crackshot
23 Aug 2010
Singapore: Korean sharpshooter Kim Jang Mi is getting to like Singapore. At the first Asian Youth Games here in July 2009, Kim won the junior women’s 10m air pistol gold medal. At the first Youth Olympic Games she did it again – and took gold in the same event at Singapore Sports School on Monday.
Although the result was the same, Kim says she has changed a lot in the year in between her gold medals.
“The Asian Youth Games last year was my first international competition so I had no idea what to expect. But since then I have taken part in many international competitions and feel more experienced. It is important that I have taken this step up from Asian Youth Games to YOG,” said Kim, who turns 18 on September 25.
“This is the first YOG and I have a gold medal, so I am really proud for my country.”
Kim was expected to be pushed all the way in the final round by China’s Fang Xue, but the latter could not find any consistency and needed a one-shot shoot-off to take the silver medal from Guatemala’s surprise package Geraldine Kate Solorzano.
Kim finished strongly with a 10.8 and 10.6 to end with 479.2. Fang and Solorzano both had 471.5, before Fang won the shoot-off 10.8 to 10.1.
The Korean champion took up shooting aged 13 and switched from the air rifle to the pistol at 15, clearly a good choice. “It is more interesting – and much easier than the rifle,” she added.
The 2012 London Olympics is the next target for Kim, and her coach feels she has the ability and the potential to win gold in the full Olympic Games.
“She was in good form coming into the YOG so we knew she had the ability to be the champion,” said Lee Yong Jae.
“To go higher she needs to improve her self-control because sometimes she can get nervous. She must concentrate on every shot in every competition.”
Kim finished fourth in the 2010 World Championships in Munich, Germany, and third at the 2009 Asian Championships in Doha, so Singapore must feel special – like a golden second home.