The first word of the Yonyap news agency take on Park Tae-hwan’s plea for clemency after three golds at Korean Olympic swim trials in Gwangju, sums up the mood and status of a man once revered at home: “Disgraced ormer Olympic swimming champion Park Tae-hwan said Wednesday that he can…”. The rest of that introduction to an article that outlines the swimmer’s fast efforts – 3:44.26 in the 400m freestyle atop a 1:46 in the 200 and 15:10 in the 1500m this week – reads “perform better at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Summer Olympics if he is given the opportunity to compete at the quadrennial event”.
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