Kim Yeon-koung

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Kim Yeon-koung
Kim Yeon-koung at the Korea-Thai Super Match.jpg
Personal information
NationalitySouth Korean
Born (1988-02-26) 26 February 1988 (age 31)
HometownAnsan, South Korea
Height1.92 m (6 ft 4 in)
Weight73 kg (161 lb)
Spike315 cm (124 in)
Block299 cm (118 in)
Volleyball information
PositionOutside Hitter
Current clubEczacıbaşı VitrA
Number10 (national team), 18 (club)
Career
YearsTeams
2005-2009
2009-2011
2011-2017
2017-2018
2018-
South Korea Heungkuk Life
Japan JT Marvelous
Turkey Fenerbahçe
China Shanghai
Turkey Eczacıbaşı VitrA
National team
2005-South Korea
Kim Yeon-koung
Hangul
김연경
Hanja
Revised RomanizationGim Yeongyeong
McCune–ReischauerKim Yŏngyŏng

Kim Yeon-koung (Korean김연경; Hanja金軟景; RRKim Yeon-gyeong, Korean pronunciation: [kim.jʌngjʌŋ]; born 26 February 1988 in Ansan) is a South Korean female professional volleyball player. She is the outside hitter and captain of the South Korea women's national volleyball team, and currently plays for the Turkish team Eczacıbaşı VitrA.

Kim signed a three-year contract with Fenerbahçe in 2011 after playing for Cheonan Heungkuk Life in South Korea and JT Marvelous in Japan. She signed another two-year extension with Fenerbahçe for the 2014-15 and 2015-16 seasons.[1] After playing with Fenerbahçe for another season, she spent a year in the Chinese Volleyball league, and came back to Turkey for the 2018-19 season with Eczacıbaşı VitrA.

She earned an MVP and Best Scorer award at the 2012 London Olympics, despite South Korea finishing 4th in the rankings. She is regarded as one of the best and richest volleyball players in the world.

Career by Years[edit]

High School and Before[edit]

Kim Yeon-koung was born in Ansan and started volleyball in 4th grade, elementary school, initially inspired by her older sister who was a volleyball player. Until middle school, because she was less than 170cm, she considered quitting volleyball and becoming a soccer player. Fortunately, during her three years in high school, she grew more than 20cm, and moved her position to an outsider hitter from her initial position of a setter and libero.

She received the spotlight of the Korean media due to her outstanding physical condition and performance in the high school stage. As a result, she was selected in the South Korea women's national volleyball team in 2005 during her final year of high school. She made her international debut at the 2005 World Grand Champions Cup, where she ranked as 3rd Best Scorer.[2] She was picked as first choice in the first round by the Cheonan Heungkuk Life, where she started her professional volleyball career.

Korean League[edit]

During the 2005–06 season, which was her first season of professional volleyball, she contributed to Heungkuk Life becoming the champions of the Korean League. She received every award available, including the New Face Award, Regular Season MVP, Finals MVP, Best Scorer, Best Spiker, and Best Server. However, she was forced to receive surgery in her right knee after the season ended. Even before full recovering from the surgery, she participated in the 2006 Asian Games. Mid-competition, she suffered from serious pain in the left foot, as an aftereffect of the surgery.[3]

She again became the champion of the 2006–07 season. Heungkuk Life achieved the feat of being 1st place in the regular season and winning the finals for two years in a row. She was selected as the Most Valuable Player for both the regular season and finals round, and was also named Best Spiker. Immediately after the finals, she again received surgery due to Articular cartilage damage in her left knee. After a few months of recovery, she participated in the 2007 World Cup and played full-time in the competition.

While she contributed to her team finishing 1st place in the 2007–08 regular season, thus receiving the MVP, her team was defeated by GS Caltex KIXX in the finals. She finished the season with the highest attack success rate yet of 47.59%, thus named as Best Spiker for three consecutive years. She received another knee surgery soon after, forcing her to miss the Olympic Qualification Tournament for the 2008 Olympics. South Korea was not qualified for the tournament as a result.

In the 2008–09 season, she became the first female player of the Korean League with the record of scoring 2000 points and 2000 attack points. Despite her ground-breaking performance, Heungkuk Life had a difficult season with the replacement of head coach Hyeon-Ju Hwang, ranking 3rd in the regular season. However, the team had successful games in the post-season, and won the finals against GS Caltex KIXX. Kim Yeon-koung's outstanding performance led to her to claiming her third MVP title. She then planned to play overseas in Japan's V.Premier League, becoming South Korea's first professional volleyball player to play outside of Korea.

Japanese V.Premiere League[edit]

Kim signed a 1+1 year contract with JT Marvelous, meaning that she would renew her contract if her first season is successful with the team. She achieved a miraculous record in the 2009–10 Regular Season with a winning streak for 25 games, which is second highest record after NEC Red Rockets's 31 streak in 2001. Kim was the Best Scorer in the regular season with 696 points, leading JT end the regular season is first place. In the playoff game, the team lost against Toray Arrows, ending as a Runners-up. Kim was voted for the Fighting Spirit Award and Best 6.

During the off-season, Kim participated in the KOVO Cup in August as she was still registered for Heungkuk Life, and she led the team to victory and won Most Valuable Player. In September, she played at the 2010 Asian Cup and became Best Scorer and Best Spiker. Then she played for the 2010 World Championship ending in 13th place and 2010 Asian Games, winning a silver medal, which was her first medal earned after becoming a professional player.

Athletic Achievements[edit]

FIVB Positions[edit]

She is currently a member of the FIVB Athletes' Commission[4], which is a group that works as a "link between volleyball players and FIVB". According to the FIVB website, Kim, being a "MVP at the 2012 London Olympic Game, is a fan's favourite all around the world," thus confirmed by the organization as a member.[5]

She is also one of the FIVB Heroes, which is an official campaign of the FIVB to raise awareness about the players' athletic achievements and to increase the worldwide interest in the sport.

Comments[edit]

Body of Russia, power of United States, the technique like Japan and quickness of Brazil all in one player. She is the best player in the world for sure.[6]

Kim Yeon-Koung is something special. I have never seen anything like that in my 20 years in volleyball. We all know she is special, but that was really something.[7]

- Giovanni Guidetti

She (Kim) is one of the best players in the world, no doubts about it. We had a lot of problems to make blocks and defend against her.[8]

- Zoran Terzić

Athletic Career[edit]

National Team Career[edit]

Club Career[edit]

Individual Awards[edit]

  • 2009 DongA Sports - Grand Prize in Professional Volleyball
  • 2012 MBN Women's Sports Category - May MVP
  • 2017 Korean National Council of Women - Woman of the Year[9]
  • 2017 Brand of the Year Korea - Athlete of the Year

Individual Records[edit]

not awarded, but statistically:

Filmography[edit]

Variety shows[edit]

Publications in Korean[edit]

  • It's Not Yet The End (아직 끝이 아니다/2016)[10]
  • It's Not Yet The End, Children's Book (아직 끝이 아니다-Super 지구별 배구왕 김연경/2018)[11]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Derinev.com. "AÇIKLAMA - Fenerbahçe Spor Kulübü Resmi Sitesi".
  2. ^ "Best Players". World Grand Champions Cup. FIVB. Retrieved 16 July 2019.
  3. ^ "女배구 김연경, "병원갈 시간도 없어요"".
  4. ^ "FIVB ATHLETES COMMISSION".
  5. ^ "FIVB ATHLETES' COMMISSION APPROVED BY BOARD OF ADMINISTRATION".
  6. ^ "Guidetti Praises Kim". Volleywood.net.
  7. ^ "KOREA'S KIM YEON-KOUNG 'SOMETHING SPECIAL' - GUIDETTI". FIVB.
  8. ^ "Kim is a key player for Korea". FIVB.
  9. ^ "'배구여제' 김연경, 올해의 여성상 받는다". Yonhapnews.
  10. ^ Kim, Yeon-koung (15 September 2016). 아직 끝이 아니다. 가연.
  11. ^ Lim, Ji-Hyung (30 April 2018). 아직 끝이 아니다. 가연.

External links[edit]

Awards
Preceded by
Brazil Sheilla Castro
Best Scorer of
World Grand Champions Cup

2009
Succeeded by
Not Awarded
Preceded by
South Korea Kim Min-ji
Best Scorer of
Asian Cup

2010
Succeeded by
Thailand Onuma Sittirak
Preceded by
China Wang Yimei
Best Spiker of
Asian Cup

2010
Succeeded by
Thailand Onuma Sittirak
Preceded by
China Xue Ming
Best Spiker of
Asian Championship

2011
Succeeded by
China Zhu Ting
Preceded by
Poland Małgorzata Glinka
Most Valuable Player of
CEV Champions League

2011-2012
Succeeded by
Serbia Jovana Brakočević
Preceded by
Serbia Jelena Nikolić
Best Scorer of
CEV Champions League

2011-2012
Succeeded by
Comoros Madelaynne Montano
Preceded by
Brazil Paula Pequeno
Most Valuable Player of
Olympic Games

2012
Succeeded by
China Zhu Ting
Preceded by
United States Logan Tom
Best Scorer of
Olympic Games

2012
Succeeded by
Not Awarded
Preceded by
Kazakhstan Yelena Pavlova
Best Scorer of
Asian Championship

2009, 2011, 2013
Succeeded by
Not Awarded
Preceded by
China Wei Qiuyue
Best Server of
Asian Championship

2013
Succeeded by
Not Awarded
Preceded by
Not Awarded
Most Valuable Player of
CEV Cup

2013-2014
Succeeded by
Russia Tatiana Kosheleva
Preceded by
Not Awarded
Best Opposite Spiker of
Asian Cup

2014
Succeeded by
Kazakhstan Yekaterina Zhdanova
Preceded by
Dominican Republic Bethania de la Cruz
Czech Republic Helena Havelková
Best Outside Spiker of
CEV Champions League

2015-2016 (with United States Kimberly Hill)
Succeeded by
United States Kelsey Robinson
United States Kimberly Hill
Preceded by
Not Awarded
Best Outside Spiker of
Asian Championship

2015 (with China Zhu Ting)
2017 (with Thailand Chatchu-on Moksri)
2019 (with Japan Mayu Ishikawa)
Succeeded by
TBD