We still got some Tokyo Olympics 2020 fever over here, and while four years is a long wait, we thought of listing down some of our favorite athletes from K-dramas through the years. Be it a team sport or an individual event, we always love stories featuring an underdog’s success or a top player’s doom.
🥇 Kim Je-hyeok (Prison Playbook)
Surviving literal rock bottom, baseball superstar Kim Je-hyeok (Park Hae-soo) was sentenced to prison after he was found guilty of using excessive force while chasing a man trying to sexually assault his sister.
🥇 Kim Bok-joo and Jung Joon-hyung (Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok-joo)
A couple worthy to be in this list – College aces Bok-joo and Joon-hyung found love while training to be Korea’s next generation of national athletes.
🥇 Ko Dong-man (Fight for My Way)
A taekwondo player-turned-mixed martial arts fighter makes a name for himself in this slice-of-life drama about love, friendships, and career.
🥇 Han Se-yoon (Racket Boys)
This middle schooler is South Korea’s badminton phenom! At such a young age, Se-yoon has already achieved so much because of her talent, determination, and discipline.
Special mention: Racket Sonyeondan – badminton underdogs who literally worked their way to the championship!
🥇 Ki Seon-gyeom (Run On)
Another top player who hit a stumbling block in life after defending his junior against unfair judgment and bullying within the organization – Seon-gyeom is a different breed of an athlete. He is privileged but not entitled, and doesn’t gloat about being in second place, he is just happy to be doing what he loves best.
🥇 Chilbong (Reply 1994)
Although he is only a freshman, he is the number one pitcher of Yonsei University’s baseball team! And the best “the one that got away” in all of the Reply series. 😉
🥇 Woo Dae-sung (A Love So Beautiful)
In the remake of this global Chinese hit drama, he’s a typical transfer student who falls in love with the main girl, but in our eyes, he’s one good swimmer who has lots of potential!
🥇 Kang Tae-joon (To The Beautiful You)
A well-loved manga character-turned-real life, Tae-joon is a high jump athlete who holds the best record in the World Junior Championship.
🥇 Jeong Tae-eul (The King: Eternal Monarch)
A badass police detective with taekwondo roots running through her veins, Jeong Tae-eul can knock down every man with a single kick!
🥇 Kang Chul (W: Two Worlds)
Another manga character who turned to a real person (quite literally in the drama), Kang Chul is not just a multi-dimensional businessman, he also holds an Olympic gold medal in shooting.
🥇 Choi Taek (Reply 1988)
Arguably the most decorated athlete on this list, Choi Taek not just made waves in world of Baduk (Go), he also captured
my the nation’s heart as the endgame in the last Reply series installment. 😉
🥇 Lee Min-suk (High School King of Savvy)
One of Seo In-guk’s best characters to date, Lee Min-suk is a high school ice hockey varsity player who was forced to live a double life as he impersonated his brother as an executive in a conglomerate.
🥇 Jung Saet-byul (Backstreet Rookie)
Another daughter of a taekwondo master, Saet-byul will never beat someone without reason! All her poor opponents are low-life thugs who deserved to get beaten!
There’s still a lot of athletes missing from this list. Who are your top K-drama athletes and what sports do they play?