Doosan Bears v Kia Tigers, Sunday 5th September, 5.30pm

I find it very difficult not to watch live sport if the opportunity is there. Apart from it being an enjoyable way to spend some time, I’m always convinced that if I don‘t go I’ll miss something worthwhile. You know,  like the Boro scoring eight. I was halfway up Great Gable when we did that. Actually, just us scoring these days would probably do me. 

May 2008, as we were beating Man City 8-1. Hard to believe really.

 This baseball game was something that I’d had no intention of going to see up until a few seconds before I leapt off the subway. I’d been returning from a trip to Jeonju where I’d watched Jeonbuk beat Pohang Steelers the day before and the subway route from the bus station back to my apartment goes past the Jamsil baseball stadium. 

Whilst I suspected that there might be a game on I didn’t know for certain as it’s the stage in the season where previously cancelled games are squeezed in here and there and so it was quite possible that the Doosan Bears and the LG Twins could both had been given an away fixture that afternoon. 

I was also quite tired. I’d got through a fair few beers before, during and after the match, followed by a morning spent sightseeing in Jeonju and then four hours stuck in traffic on the bus. If anything, I was looking forward to a bit of a lie down. 

We’d been wandering around the old Hanok village area in Jeonju that morning, marvelling at the recently erected ’historical’ features, a lot of which were revealed to be replicas when you read the small print on the signs nearby. We’d seen a Taesil, which was a stone structure which had once contained the umbilical cord of King Yejong. It didn‘t any more though because, as the accompanying sign pointed out, the pot containing His Majesty’s surgical waste had been stolen in 1928 by the occupying Japanese army, possibly to keep their loose change in. 

Not the King's umbilical cord.

 Then we saw a replica of the building that had once housed the Sillok, a multi-volume book set that recorded daily life in the royal court in the fifteenth century. This too, we were informed, had been destroyed by the Japanese, this time in 1592, no doubt because they were out of toilet paper and couldn’t be bothered to nip down to the 7-Eleven. 

Not a load of rare old books.

 Around the corner were a load of copies of paintings of the various Korean monarchs. No prizes for guessing who had used the originals for sledging down hills on snowy days. 

Apparently it's his head that's the funny shape, not the hat.

 One thing that had survived intact in the Hanok Village was a tree that was reputed to be six hundred years old. I can only presume that the Japanese didn’t realise its significance at any point or else they would no doubt have whittled it down to a pair of chopsticks. 

So, after all of that I had plans for a quiet evening. The schedule changed though as the train drew into the Sports Complex subway station and I saw the KIA Tigers fans get up from their seats and head towards the door. Initially I didn‘t give it much of a thought, then I wondered if I should go as well. I began to think that I was missing out on something and by the time the train had come to a standstill I was stood at the door too. 

Even as I walked towards the stadium, I was still weighing it up. On one hand, I was worn out and had been on my way home. Not only that, but it was an end of season game where the result wasn’t likely to affect anyones play-off position. In its favour, it was live sport, it was a sunny evening and I could get a box of those weird shaped chicken wings from the Burger King stand for my tea. The chicken wings swung it and I picked up a ticket from a tout for a couple of thousand won below face value and headed in. 

Did I mention that we'd had a typhoon?

 Sometimes I do stuff because I can, rather than because I really want to do it. It’s a bit like when you eat a whole packet of chocolate chip cookies just because you have them in the house and even though you aren’t remotely hungry. Still, enough of the inner turmoil and more about the match. 

It was Doosan Bears against KIA Tigers. They are both reasonable teams. Doosan are looking as if they will finish third in the table, whilst KIA will probably finish fifth, just outside of the play-off positions. There was a decent crowd too, certainly a lot more people than there were at the LG Twins v Nexen game I’d been to at this stadium the previous week. 


Doosan looked to be starting the game a bit more positively, with one of the Tigers getting out after three strikes in successive balls. It happened again shortly afterwards although I wasn’t too surprised as the lad who was swinging at fresh air had a batting average of about 0.1. 

It turned around in the fourth innings as KIA Tigers hit a couple of homers in quick succession, each was to the furthest part of the ground, just in front of the scoreboard and each one was worth two runs. It meant that by the end of the fourth, KIA had a 4-1 lead. 

Cheerleaders for the Doosan Bears.

 That was where I left it. I’d eaten the odd-shaped chicken wings for my tea and I’d seen about an hour and a quarter which on this occasion was enough. Besides, I probably had a couple of packets of chocolate chip cookies in the cupboard that had been there longer than could reasonably have been expected. 

And you know that whole thing about having to go to the match in case I missed something exciting? Well, I checked the score the next day and with two already out in the final Doosan innings, the Tigers were hanging on at 4-3. The Bears brought their pinch hitter on and he whacked a two-run homer for a last gasp 5-4 victory. 


3 Responses to “Doosan Bears v Kia Tigers, Sunday 5th September, 5.30pm”

  1. Cogstar Says:

    Its ok they’ll get to do it all again next year, oh and the year after, and…well you get the picture

  2. Cogstar Says:

    Oh I liked the Japanese bit of the story, do they sell forks?

  3. Kingkenny7 Says:

    Hey, Lionking. I recommend you to join the forum of K-League fans in English.

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