“Clutch Park” Park Jung-ah (30) is indispensable in the history of the women’s professional volleyball Korea Expressway Corporation. Since its foundation in 1970, the Korea Expressway Corporation, which has not won since its time as a business volleyball player, has not lifted the trophy until the latest time even after the launch of the V League. It was even necessary to see IBK Industrial Bank of Korea, which was founded in 2010 and participated as a six-team team, win the trophy in its second year of foundation.
It was in the 2017-2018 season that the Korea Expressway Corporation won the championship match. It was the first season when Park Jung-ah, who lifted the trophy three times as a founding member of IBK Industrial Bank of Korea, joined as a free agent (FA). Park Jung-ah, who presented her first victory in the team’s history as soon as she joined the Korea Expressway Corporation, stayed with the Korea Expressway Corporation after winning her second FA, and also won her first ever “reverse sweep” in the 2022-2023 season.
After qualifying for the third FA, Park Jung-ah left for Pepper Savings Bank for a new challenge. And I left another big gift for Korea Expressway Corporation. Perhaps the main character is Kim Se-bin (18), a middle blocker who can take care of the court for 10 years or more in the middle of the Korea Expressway Corporation.
Mayfield Hotel in Gangseo-gu, Seoul, on the 10th, when the 2023-2024 Korea Volleyball Federation (KOVO) women’s rookie draft was held. Pepper Savings Bank’s black beads were the most in the first place nomination on the day. Director Kim Se-jin pressed the button, and what came out of the lottery box was a black bead. At that moment, Korea Expressway Corporation coach Kim Jong-min and club officials cheered.
Pepper Savings Bank’s black beads came out, and the reason why the Korea Expressway Corporation cheered was that the two teams traded their first-round nomination rights during the off-season. Pepper Savings Bank recruited Park Jung-ah, who was released as a free agent (FA) by the Korea Expressway Corporation, and made the mistake of not tying the main setter Lee Go-eun as a protective player in the process of giving up a compensation player.
There are two directions for choosing a reward player. Choosing the best player in the team who is not tied up as a protected player, regardless of whether or not a position in the team is needed. The second is to choose the resources necessary for the team. The Korea Expressway Corporation’s choice was the former. The Korea Expressway Corporation named Lee Go-eun as a compensation player. Pepper Savings Bank, which lost its main setter overnight to raise the ball stably after bringing Park Jung-ah, gave up the right to nominate middle blocker Choi Ga-eun and the first round of the draft and brought back the right to nominate Lee Go-eun and the Korea Expressway Corporation. That’s why Pepper Savings Bank’s overall No. 1 nomination was transferred to the Korea Expressway Corporation.
Kim Se-bin (Hanbom High School), the second daughter of Kim Cheol-soo, head of KEPCO, and Kim Nam-soon, a former legendary player of the Korea-Japan combined island, is the “biggest fish” among the draft participants. Kim Se-bin, the longest among the participants in the 1m87 draft, is said to be excellent as a middle blocker.
Naturally, Kim Jong-min of the Korea Expressway Corporation took the podium and called Kim Se-bin first overall. In other words, “Clutch Park” Park Jung-ah left the Korea Expressway Corporation with two V-League titles and the best prospect of Kim Se-bin. The Korea Expressway Corporation may be called ‘Santa Park Jeong-ah’.
There was no time for the smile to disappear from the face of head coach Kim Jong-min, who entered the interview room after the draft. This was because the first-priority nomination right received during the Lee Go-eun trade was replaced by Kim Se-bin as planned. “If I have physical strength, Kim Se-bin will put him on the court whether he does well or not and give him a chance unconditionally,” he said.
Asked if he liked Park Jung-ah’s gift, head coach Kim Jong-min laughed and said, “It’s even better if (Park) Jung-ah is on our team. But thank you for giving me a good gift on the way. “I should buy Jung-ah a meal after the national team schedule,” he said.
After the interview with the coaches of the seven teams, the interview with the players began, and Kim Se-bin, who entered the interview room first as a top priority, seemed nervous about his first professional interview. He said, “People around me told me that I would be selected as the No. 1, but I was nervous because it might not be the case. “It didn’t feel real when my name was called,” he said.
Kim Se-bin’s own strength was his ability to attack. He said, “I think my strength is that my wrist snap is fast when I hit a fast attack. The Korea Expressway Corporation wants to learn more about blocking reading.”
Although she is still 19 years old, Kim has left a comment that is also good at social life. When asked about his role model, he named middle blocker Bae Yu-na, a star of the Korea Expressway Corporation. “I’ve thought Bae Yu-na was cool and amazing when I saw her,” he said. “I want to learn all of Bae Yu-na’s plays one by one while training the team.”
Kim Se-bin’s parents are both from Gyeonggi-do, so the spotlight has also poured out more. Regarding this interest, Kim Se-bin said, “I’m burdened with many people’s interest, but I think it’s also interest in me and I’m trying to overcome it,” adding, “I saw a video of my parents running.” “I want to learn my mom’s attack and my dad’s blocking sense,” he said. “Thanks to my parents who complimented me and gave me a lot of bitter words, I was honored with the first place overall.” I want to say thank you,” he added.
The first place overall will naturally be given the title of the Rookie of the Year. When asked if he was greedy for the Rookie of the Year award, Kim Se-bin’s answer was only one letter. “Yes.”