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S.Korea withdraws appeal on women's handball
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The world handball governing body IHF revealed in their official website on Friday that South Korea had withdrawn their appeal against the Disciplinary Commission decision on the result of their women's handball semifinal against Norway.

"During the meeting of the IHF Jury dealing with the appeal from the South Korean delegation against the decision of the Disciplinary Commission, the South Korean delegation withdrew their appeal formally and in full. The Jury thus stated the proceedings were finished," announced the IHF in its website.

Norway edged South Korea 29-28 in the semifinal of the Beijing Olympic women's handball event with a controversial last-moment goal.

The South Korean Olympic delegation said the Norway's winning goal was netted after the buzzer and should be annulled, adding that the match should be into overtime. But their demand was rejected by the IHF's Disciplinary Commission.

"The protest is refused, because the situation in the last second was a factual decision. The result of the match is confirmed by the Disciplinary Commission," the IHF announced on Thursday.

South Korea then appealed against the Disciplinary Commission decision to the IHF Jury, the second IHF appeal authority. And according to the IHF-Regulations, an appeal can be made against the decision of the Disciplinary Commission up to two hours after receipt of the decision. The Jury will deal with the appeal, and its decision will be final.

In that breathtaking duel, trailing 28-27 fifteen seconds before the buzzer, South Korea hurled in an equalizer with only six seconds to go.

However, the Norwegians launched a lightning counter-attack. Center back Gro Hammerseng's goal left both teams bewildered in the court.

The South Korean squad insisted that the goal was scored after the buzzer, and refused to leave the seats in sideline after referees endorsed Norway's victory. South Korean coach Lim Young-chul argued with judges on the matter for about half an hour before their departure.

Lim said after the match that video replay from South Korean TV showed the ball crossed the goal line two seconds after the fulltime buzzer. However he was pessimistic with the outcome of the protest because there was no such precedent.

The disappointed South Korean squad has cancelled their training session, scheduled for 17:00 to 17:50 on Friday at Guangcai Gymnasium.

The final of the Beijing Olympic women's handball tournament will be played between European champion Norway and world titlist Russia on Saturday. And South Korea is scheduled to fight for a bronze against Hungary before the final.

(Xinhua News Agency August 22, 2008)

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