SEOUL, Oct. 25 (Xinhua) -- The South Korean men's table tennis team promised a good show at the Asian Games in Guangzhou, China, slated for November 12-27.
The national team aims to make it to at least the semifinals of men's singles and doubles events and to reach the final of the men's team event in the hope of winning gold medals.
Expectations toward the men's table tennis team were high during the 2006 Asian Games in Doha, Qatar, after Ryu Seung-min took gold in the men's singles with a dramatic win over China's Wang Hao at the Athens Olympics in 2004.
South Korea, however, surrendered to the might of China at the Doha Asian Games and fell short of garnering two silver and three bronze medals.
Head coach Kim Taek-soo said South Koreans players have practiced strenuously to prepare themselves against China's style of play, represented by power, speed and strength.
"Mainland China has become stronger, and so have countries and regions like Japan and Hong Kong. I think we can aim for gold medals when we get to the semifinals and finals. For the men's singles and doubles events, we hope to advance to at least the semifinals," Kim said in a recent interview with Xinhua.
Although Athens gold medalist Ryu Seung-min is absent on the national squad for this Asian Games, the coach casts no doubt on the team's strength.
"We have suffered many defeats against China. This time, we will fight again with a mind to give a challenge," said South Korean table tennis player Oh Sang-eun.