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Thai Taekwondo star Panipak top bet for Tokyo gold

Thai Taekwondo star Panipak top bet for Tokyo gold

TAEKWONDO: Thai taekwondo star Panipak Wongpattanakit is aiming to win gold at the 2020 Olympic Games.


By Bangkok Post

Friday 28 February 2020, 08:00AM


Panipak Wongpattanakit shows her Taekwondo skills at a press conference Monday (Feb 25). Photo: Bangkok Post

Panipak Wongpattanakit shows her Taekwondo skills at a press conference Monday (Feb 25). Photo: Bangkok Post

The 22-year-old is the top-ranked exponent in the women’s 49kg division and one of the country’s best hopes in Tokyo.

An Olympic gold medal is the only missing item in her glittering collection.

She was also a contender at the 2016 Olympics but had to settle for a bronze.

My aim is definitely the gold medal. I was disappointed at the previous Olympics and that’s a lesson,” said Panipak.

If I am 100% fit and do not have an injury, I am confident that I will return to Thailand [from Tokyo] with a gold medal.”

She added: “I am almost 100% ready now. I think my physical condition will peak when the Games come.”

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However, her preparations has been affected by the China coronavirus outbreak that has been wreaking havoc on a whole range of sporting events globally.

Her handlers planned for her to train in South Korea but she now has to practise in Thailand because of the epidemic, while the Asian championships have also been postponed.

Thailand coach Choi Young Seok said she could only aim for gold at the Tokyo Games because she is the No.1 athlete in her division.

If she is not sick or injured, she should not miss out on winning gold,” said the Korean coach.

Thailand have won Olympic gold medals in only two sports - boxing and weightlifting.

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