Incheon Shinhan Bank, a women’s professional basketball player, experienced a major power leak ahead of this season as ace Kim Dan-bi, who obtained the qualification as a free agent, transferred to Asan Woori Bank and forward Han Um-ji left for Busan BNK. Although Sonia Kim and Jinyoung Kim were brought in as FA compensation players, Danbi Kim, who has been active as the center of Shinhan Bank for a long time, seemed to be unable to fill the void.
However, Shinhan Bank is cruising, breaking everyone’s expectations and tying for third place with Yongin Samsung Life Insurance with 11 wins and 10 losses as of the 1st. On the 18th and 30th of last month, it defeated Woori Bank, the unrivaled leader, and became the only team to win twice against Woori Bank this season.
Everyone’s performance is great, but among them, the two veterans Shinhan Bank boasts, Han Chae-jin (39) and Lee Gyeong-eun (36), stand out. Those who have entered their twilight years as players are leading the team with a fighting spirit comparable to that of younger players.
Han Chae-jin and Lee Kyung-eun frankly confessed the team’s progress this season and their mindset as veterans in a phone call with reporters on the 1st. Han Chae-jin said, “Our players really put in a lot of effort. I think I understand what the coach is asking for while having a lot of conversations.” said. Lee Kyung-eun also said, “As the rest of the players try to fill the part where the dependence on Kim Dan-bi has decreased, synergy seems to come from there.” It seems to get better as time goes by,” he explained.
Han Chae-jin is the oldest active member. On the 27th of last month, he set a record for the oldest player in WKBL history at 38 years and 319 days by participating in the Busan BNK expedition. Among active players, BNK’s Kim Han-byeol is the second oldest after Han Chae-jin, followed by Lee Gyeong-eun. The Han Chae-jin-Lee Kyung-eun duo is the oldest duo among the 6 WKBL clubs.
Compared to his heyday, the visible records have decreased, but Gunadan Shinhan Bank coach still values them. This is because their presence in the game is still there. Han Chae-jin and Lee Kyung-eun are also full of confidence in their skills. Han Chae-jin, who was sluggish at the beginning of the season and recently found the pace, asked, “If it was because I was hitting the limit of my age, how can I explain why I’m on the rise these days?” I am the older sister and I want to fill it up a lot, but there was a part that was lacking.” Lee Kyung-eun said, “Before, there was a lack of training due to injuries and a less developed body, but this season, I think the biggest thing is that I am not sick. As a result, the number of times I participated in training increased,” he explained. 안전놀이터
It has been well over 10 years since they started to eat together from the days of Guri Kumho Life Insurance (now BNK) in the past. Now we have come to the level where we can know what each other wants just by looking at each other’s eyes. Han Chae-jin said, “Starting with basketball, we talk about everything. We’ve been together for so long that there’s really nothing to talk about.” Lee Kyung-eun also said, “I first met her sister when she was in her mid-twenties. On the court, there are times when we get irritated with each other due to our excessive desire to compete, but in terms of basketball, we communicate well.”
They always stand at the forefront and silently lead the team, and they are good role models for Shinhan Bank’s young players. Both of them know that, and as veterans, they all set their minds. Han Chae-jin said, “Because I am a player, I think I have to do what I can. Because of the big age difference, juniors may find it difficult, so I try to approach them first.” Lee Kyung-eun said, “A player must always be ready to run. If you look at young players these days, if you can’t play or are not satisfied with the game, you can see the part that you just put down. (My juniors) emphasized that I will try to prepare first so that it does not happen.” Shinhan Bank is still strong thanks to the dedication of veterans who work harder than anyone else.