Heungkuk Life Insurance Kim Yeon-kyung (35) watched the game in the warm-up zone throughout the away game against IBK Industrial Bank of the 2022-23 Dodram V League Women’s Division held at Hwaseong Indoor Gymnasium on the 8th. The new command tower, on its third day of appointment, could not even sit in the director’s seat. 

This clearly showed Heungkuk Life Insurance suffering from aftershocks after the dismissal of manager Kwon Soon-chan. 

On the 29th of last month, Heungkuk Life Insurance overcame leading Hyundai E&C with a set score of 3-1, ending 2022 happily. Heungkuk Life coach Kwon Soon-chan gave the team a special vacation of 2 nights and 3 days. 

Starting in 2023 is the worst. On the morning of the 2nd, as soon as they returned from vacation, the team received news like lightning. The club sacked manager Kwon Soon-chan after nine months in office. Kim Yeon-kyung said, “It’s too bad that I caught up with all the leaders and Yasmin Bedart of Hyundai E&C couldn’t come out due to an injury.” Fans were also bewildered.

Heungkuk Life Insurance also recognized the seriousness of the situation and exceptionally announced a position in the name of the owner. Lim Hyung-joon, CEO and owner of Heungkuk Life Insurance, said, “We inevitably decided to break up with coach Kwon Soon-chan because it did not match the direction the club wanted to go.”   

Not many people will take this word for granted. It is difficult to understand the ambiguous reason of ‘the club’s direction and difference’, but it is because it is against common sense to kick out the manager of the team in the middle of the competition for the lead. Shin Yong-jun, the new head of the team, volunteered to hold a press conference with the intention of correcting some misunderstandings, which rather raised controversy.

Director Shin Yong-jun emphasized, “There was a conflict between the coach and the manager (Kim Yeo-il) over the management of the game, not the appointment of players.” At the same time, former general manager Kim said that some fans did not like that Kim Yeon-kyung and Yelena Mrazenovic (registered name Yelena) were together in the avant-garde, and requested director Kwon to revise the rotation. It is no different from a confession that he was involved in the management of the game, which is the manager’s inherent right. Kim Yeon-kyung said, “There is no right answer for rotation, but I was getting good grades. 

The team insists on the ‘top line intervention theory’. Libero Kim Hae-ran said, “I’ve felt (Kim Yeo-il)’s involvement in (player appointments) from before. In fact, the players knew before (this incident occurred).” Kim Yeon-kyung was also upset, saying, “There was an intervention this season, and there were also games that were lost because of this.” Coach Kwon Soon-chan also said, “There was a lot of talk about the appointment of players in the club. I didn’t listen.”

Not many people see ‘intervention from the top’ as the personal opinion of former general manager Kim Yeo-il, simple-hee. I think it was ordered from a more ‘upper line’. 

Heungkuk Life Insurance appointed Kim Ki-joong, director of Sunseon Girls’ High School, as the new command tower on the 6th, five days after director Kwon Soon-chan’s resignation. However, new coach Kim Ki-joong did not appear in the game on the 8th. The club gave an unclear reason, saying, “We couldn’t finish the job of appointing a manager.” Coach Kim Dae-gyeong, who served as acting coach on this day, said, “There was no meeting between the new coach and the players.” That’s where a bigger problem lurks. 스포츠토토

Heungkuk Life Insurance won with a set score of 3-1 (25-23, 30-28, 23-25, 26-24) in the game on the 8th, when the new coach was away and Kim Yeon-kyung also missed due to symptoms of enteritis. 2nd place Heungkuk Life Insurance, which recently won 4 consecutive wins, recorded 47 points, closely chasing lead Hyundai Engineering & Construction (51 points). Kim Yeon-kyung cheered for her teammates in the warm-up zone throughout the game. 

Heungkuk Life Insurance fans are actively protesting. Kim Yeon-kyung’s fan club makes and distributes clappers that read, “Fans cheer and support the players.” She also held a truck protest on the 6th. On the truck, phrases such as ‘Volleyball is not a sports paper, a team’s play with dolls’, ‘Intervention in player selection is obvious,’ ‘Heungkuk Life’s strange hardship, the parent company Taekwang’s chairman’s mouth’ were exposed. 

Kim Hae-ran said, “There were many players who were hurt by the club’s intervention. I was like that too.” Kim Yeon-kyung also said, “It’s so surprising and regrettable. I wonder if there will be another team like this. I’m so ashamed of what has happened with Heungkuk Life Insurance recently.” He said, “I can’t trust anyone who comes as the next coach. In the end, isn’t it that the club prefers a coach who listens well?” 

Heungkuk Life Insurance is known as the ‘grave of directors’ due to repeated managerial resignations. Even when Kim Yeon-kyung’s overseas transfer and the school violence controversy between Lee Jae-young and Da-young sisters, the work process was not smooth. 

Looking at this precedent, Heungkuk Life Insurance is unlikely to ‘compensate’ for injuries suffered by the players and fans. There is no guarantee that this will never happen in the future. 

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