Happy Olympic Day!

Genchev not such an Angel

Bulgarian weightlifter Angel Genchev was winner of the Olympic gold medal in the lightweight division at Seoul 1988 before he tested positive for a banned diuretic and stripped of the title, In 1992 he was sent to prison for two years after being convicted of rape. But he was released early so he could represent his country at the World Championships in 1994, where he won a bronze medal.  He was sent to prison again in 2001 after he shot at a taxi driver. 

Medal won, lost and recovered

During the Italian rowing team's celebration after winning the quadruple sculls at Seoul 1988, David Tizzano was thrown into the water and lost his Olympic gold medal on the muddy bottom of the Han River. A South Korean diver, working as a security guard at the regatta course, retrieved it after a 50-minute search. Eight years later, in Atlanta, Tizzano won a second gold medal in the double scull. 

Form book thrown out of the window when table tennis made its Olympic debut

When table tennis made its debut in the Olympics at Seoul in 1988 the men's competition was notable for the fact that none of the top five seeded players made it to the semi-finals. Among those defeated in the quarter-finals was two-time world champion Jiang Jialiang, one of China's biggest sports stars at the time, who was defeated in four games by tenth-ranked Erik Lindh from Sweden. The shock defeats for the top players meant that the final was an all-South Korean affair between Yoo Nam-Kyu and Kim Ki-Taik. Yoo triumphed in four games. Lindh, meanwhile, won the bronze medal. Yoo also won a bronze medal at Seoul 1988 in the men's doubles. Four years later he won the bronze medal in the men's doubles together with Kim and at Atlanta 1996 he claimed another bronze medal in the men's doubles, this time together with Lee Chul-seung.

Anniversary of boxing’s Battle of Seoul highlights the continuing struggle to rid the Olympics of controversy in the ring

Anniversary of boxing’s Battle of Seoul highlights the continuing struggle to rid the Olympics of controversy in the ring

Next Thursday on September 22 marks the 28th anniversary of what many believe, for all the controversies of Rio 2016, was the lowest point for boxing at the Olympics - the moment when a referee was attacked by home officials at the 1988 Games in Seoul after a decision had gone against a South Korean bantamweight, Byun Jong-il, who subsequently delayed the competition for more than an hour by occupying the ring.