Table Tennis Star Ryu Seung-min Elected to IOC Athletes' Commission

Write : 2016-08-19 09:25:07 Update : 2016-08-19 10:11:39

Table Tennis Star Ryu Seung-min Elected to IOC Athletes' Commission

Anchor: Retired star table tennis player Ryu Seung-min from South Korea has earned membership at the International Olympic Committee(IOC). The Athens Olympic gold medalist garnered the second most votes among a total of 23 candidates in a ballot to elect four new IOC Athletes’ Commission members.
Kim Bum-soo has more.


[Sound bite: Announcement by IOC Member and Chair of the Election Committee Nicole Hoevertsz (English)]
"Seung-min Ryu, Second Place."

The announcement was made Thursday in the Olympic Village, where Olympians at Rio Games voted for the past 25 days to elect the retired South Korean table tennis player and three others to the IOC's Athletes' Commission.

German épée fencer Britta Heidemann garnered one-thousand 603 votes, followed by Ryu with one-thousand 544. 

Hungarian swimmer Daniel Gyurta and Russian pole vaulter Yelena Isinbayeva were also of the four newly elected.

As the South Korean delegation cheered in celebration, the Athens Olympic table tennis gold medalist himself was not at the news conference, arriving at the venue later from the Athletes’ Village.
[Sound bite: IOC Athletes’ Commission Member-Elect Ryu Seung-min (Korean)]
“I felt nervous. Besides, I was not sure whether I would be elected or not, so I just stayed in my room, ready to humbly accept a result.”

While not many expected him to be elected among the 23 candidates, Ryu tried to meet as many athletes as possible during the Rio Games.
[Sound bite: IOC Athletes’ Commission Member-Elect Ryu Seung-min (Korean)]
“Everyday, from 7 o’clock in the morning to late at night, I waited for athletes until they returned to the Athletes’ Village and greeted them. I think I was able to get a good result because of such sincerity, although there was not much expectation of my election.”

Athletes’ Commission members have a shorter term than IOC members, but both groups are entitled to the same rights and duties.

Limited to a single, eight-year term, the Athletes’ Commission members are eligible to vote on important IOC agendas, including Olympic host cities.

Although South Korea has two other IOC members, Ryu will be in effect the only active IOC member from the country for the time being.

Samsung Group Chairman Lee Kun-hee is the other South Korean IOC member, but has been hospitalized for years and former South Korean taekwondo athlete Moon Dae-sung is nearing the end of his term.
Kim Bum-soo, KBS World Radio News. 

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