Published : 2013-01-22 18:31
Updated : 2013-01-22 18:31
The latest contract talks between the volleyball star Kim Yeon-koung and her South Korean club have fallen through, team officials said Tuesday, putting Kim’s playing future in further limbo.
According to the volleyball team Heungguk Life Pink Spiders, the club’s general manager Kwon Kwang-young traveled to Turkey last week to finalize Kim’s transfer to the Turkish club, Fenerbahce.
Team officials said Kim demanded that her deal with Heungguk Life be terminated by June 30 this year and refused to return to South Korea after playing two seasons in Turkey on a loan deal.
Heungguk Life officials also said their proposal to trade Kim was turned down by their Fenerbahce counterparts, who were not satisfied with the Korean club’s transfer fee offer.
Kim’s playing future had been a hot potato in South Korean volleyball since July of last year, when she first signed a two-year deal with Fenerbahce. She had earlier played the 2011 season with Fenerbahce on a one-year loan from Heungguk Life.
Kim’s status as one of the world’s greatest female volleyball attackers also helped draw attention to the saga.
The 24-year-old was the leading scorer at the 2012 London Olympics, where South Korea reached the semifinals.
In the 2011-2012 season, Kim helped Fenerbahce win the CEV Champions League, the highest level of European club competition, and was named the tournament’s MVP.
But after Kim signed the two-year contract with the Turkish team, Heungguk Life claimed that Kim had not yet met her free agent eligibility requirements under the Korea Volleyball Federation rules and the contract with Fenerbahce should be voided.
According to the KOVO, players must spend at least six seasons with a South Korean team before becoming a free agent.
Kim had played four years with Heungguk Life and two more years in Japan on loan before leaving for Turkey.
Kim countered that she had played six seasons under Heungguk Life’s control because she had gone to Japan and Turkey on loan deals, not with full contracts. (Yonhap News)