5 Bizarre Ways North Korea Deals With Athletic Failure

More

North Korea's women's soccer coach made headlines yesterday when he came up with a fantastical excuse for his team's loss to the United States in opening round of the World Cup. Kim Kwang-min said his players had been struck by lightning three weeks ago, and were in too weak a state to win the game:

When we stayed in Pyongyang during training there was an unexpected accident so our team was not capable of playing. Our players were hit by lightning during a training match. More than five were hospitalised. The match was on 8 June.

This was the first anyone had heard of the June 8th incident.

Strange as the story sounds, it's not the first time a North Korean official has gone to bizarre lengths to excuse an athletic shortcoming. Here are five strange ways the repressive country has handled sports defeats in the past:

Jump to comments
Presented by

Eleanor Barkhorn is a former senior editor at The Atlantic.

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

Adventures in Legal Weed

Colorado is now well into its first year as the first state to legalize recreational marijuana. How's it going? James Hamblin visits Aspen.


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Adventures in Legal Weed

Colorado is now well into its first year as the first state to legalize recreational marijuana. How's it going? James Hamblin visits Aspen.

Video

What Makes a Story Great?

The storytellers behind House of CardsandThis American Life reflect on the creative process.

Video

Tracing Sriracha's Origin to Thailand

Ever wonder how the wildly popular hot sauce got its name? It all started in Si Racha.

Video

Where Confiscated Wildlife Ends Up

A government facility outside of Denver houses more than a million products of the illegal wildlife trade, from tigers and bears to bald eagles.

Video

Is Wine Healthy?

James Hamblin prepares to impress his date with knowledge about the health benefits of wine.

Video

The World's Largest Balloon Festival

Nine days, more than 700 balloons, and a whole lot of hot air

Writers

Up
Down

More in Entertainment

Just In