Class is forever. Korean modern pentathlon star Jeon Woong-tae (27-Gwangju Metropolitan Government) is on track for another gold medal.
Jeong Jin-hwa (34-Korea Land and Housing Corporation), Lee Ji-hoon (27-Korea Land and Housing Corporation), Jeon Woong-tae and Seo 사설토토 Chang-wan (26-Jeollanam-do) competed in the men’s modern pentathlon fencing bonus round (all-around epee), swimming and laser run (combined athletics + shooting) semifinals at the Hangzhou 2022 Asian Games at the Fuyang Throat Sports Center in Hangzhou, China, today. Jung Jin-hwa and Jeon Woong-tae competed in Group A in the morning, while Lee Ji-hoon and Seo Chang-wan competed in Group B in the afternoon.
Two days earlier (Feb. 20), the four competed in the fencing ranking rounds. Lee Ji-hoon topped the 29-player field with a 22V (win)-6D (loss) score of 264 points. He was followed by Seo Chang-wan in 9th place overall with 229 points (17V/11D), Jeon Woong-tae in 10th place overall with 229 points (17V/11D), and Jung Jin-hwa, the eldest brother, in 14th place overall with 215 points (15V/13D). Top stars Jeon Woong-tae and eldest brother Jung Jin-hwa struggled in Fansing and did not perform as well as they would have liked.
However, the fencing slump was temporary. Both Jeon Woong-tae and Jeong Jin-hwa won two fencing bonus rounds to add two points. Keeping the momentum going, Jeon added 304 points with a fourth-place finish in the swim (2:03.35), while Jung earned 305 points with a third-place finish (2:02.56).
In the final laser run, Jeon finished fourth (11:29.40) for 611 points and Jung fifth (11:35.31) for 605 points. With a total of 1146 and 1127 points, respectively, Jeon and Jung finished third and seventh in Group A of the 15-player semifinals.
Jeon rebounded from a slump in the fencing ranking round held on the 20th. Only two athletes had higher scores than Jeon. If he performs well in his main event, the laser run, along with equestrian in the medal match on Thursday, he could make history in Korean modern pentathlon.
At the last Asian Games in Jakarta-Palembang 2018, Jeon won gold in the men’s individual pentathlon. If he manages to stand on the podium again, he will become the first Korean pentathlete to win back-to-back titles and back-to-back championships in the history of the sport.
In the afternoon’s semifinal Group B competition, Lee was unable to add any points in the bonus round. He added 300 points with a third-place finish in the 토토사이트 swim (2:05.21) and 11th place in the laser run (12:07.83) for 573 points. He finished third in Group B with a total of 1137 points.
Competing in his first Asian Games, Seo Chang-wan, like Lee Ji-hoon, finished scoreless in the bonus round, but added 307 points for his second-place finish in the swim (2:01.51) and 601 points for his fifth-place finish in the laser run (11:39.75) to finish second in Group B with a total of 1,137 points.
Meanwhile, the pentathlon team is set to compete in the equestrian and laser run medal rounds and the team event on Thursday. Jeon Woong-tae, Seo Chang-wan, and Lee Ji-hoon have their sights set high. It’s a race to the finish. Will the pentathlon team be able to reach the pinnacle once again after Jeon Woong-tae at the last Asian Games?