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SBD Global/February 25, 2013/Olympics

Fomer Judoka Defeats Former Table Tennis Star To Become KOC President

Former judoka Kim Jung-haeng was elected as the Korean Olympic Committee’s next president on Friday "overcoming a stiff challenge" from Saenuri Party lawmaker and former table tennis star Elisa Lee, according to Jung Min-ho of the KOREA TIMES. The 69-year-old "earned 28 votes from 54 delegates to Lee’s 25 with one abstention" becoming the "first former athlete to head the country’s top sports administration body." Kim, who "previously ran unsuccessfully for the post" in '02 and '08, said that he "will focus on improving the welfare and competitive environments for athletes." Kim also stressed "increased exchanges with North Korea in the sporting realm and continuing the country’s efforts to host major international sporting events" despite growing criticism. The new KOC president also "promised balanced development between popular spectator sports and less watched sports." Kim: "We have to host international events for different sports, especially the ones that do not get much attention" (KOREA TIMES, 2/22).
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