Sunday, July 11, 2010

Athlete Profile - Jeon Ki-Young

Jeon Ki-young is a South Korean judo legend who is universally considered the sport's greatest middleweight competitor, as well as one of the greatest judoka of all time.

Jeon has won three consecutive world championships (1993, 1995, 1997), twice beating the Japanese judo legend Hidehiko Yoshida in dramatic fashion in the finals, including once in Yoshida's home court in Japan. He has also won six world cup titles.

The crowning moment in Jeon's judo career came in winning the gold medal in the men's middleweight division at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, U.S. He defeated Armen Bagdasarov of Uzbekistan in the final match by ippon. In his march to the gold, Jeon won every match by ippon, except the 1st round match against the Dutch judoka Mark Huizinga, who would go on to dominate the weight once Jeon himself retired.

Jeon retired from competition at a relatively young age of 25 in 1999, citing both knee injuries and an absence of motivation due to lack of competition. He retired undefeated in both Olympic and world championship competition.

Olympic Games
  Gold 1996 Atlanta -86 kg

World Championships
Gold 1993 Hamilton -78 kg
Gold 1995 Chiba -86 kg
Gold 1997 Paris -86 kg

Asian Championships
Gold 1995 New Delhi -86 kg
Bronze 1996 Ho Chi Minh -86 kg

East Asian Games
Silver 1997 Busan -86 kg

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