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Sneak peek at FINA World Championships Gwangju 2019 Updated: 2019-07-04 07:08:21 KST

Time now for our "Life & Info" segment, where we focus on information useful for your everyday life.
Today we are going to talk about the upcoming World Swimming Championships that will take place in Korea's southwestern city of Gwangju.
We have our Kan Hyeong-woo in the studio to tell us more.
Hyeong-woo, it's always exciting when a big international sporting event comes to Korea, give us some of the details.

Well Mark, the world's biggest biennial swimming competition is set to take place in Gwangju as you just said.
The FINA World Championships will officially begin next Friday, July 12th and run until the 28th.
It's the first time South Korea is hosting the global swimming competition.
and Gwangju is setting records for the most number of participating athletes and countries.
Almost three-thousand athletes from about two-hundred countries will compete at the FINA World Championships.
So over the course of seventeen days, the athletes will compete in swimming, diving, high diving, artistic swimming, open water swimming and water polo at five different venues in Gwangju and Yeosu.
Just in case artistic swimming sounds unfamiliar to you, it used to be called synchronized swimming.

In the meantime, the organizing committee says it's still waiting on North Korean athletes to participate in the competition and it's going to wait until the very last minute before the opening ceremony next Friday.

But if they show up, won't it affect the match schedule and the seedings?

The committee says it shouldn't be that big of a problem, as North Korea usually takes part in diving and artistic swimming both of which aren't schedule-sensitive.

So we'll have to wait and see whether they decide to come to Gwangju.
But as far as the competition itself, does South Korea have any medal hopefuls?

Unfortunately, South Korea's biggest swimming star Park Tae-hwan, who won a gold medal in the 400-metre freestyle at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, is not participating in this year's swimming championships.
But hopes remain alive with Kim Seo-yeong.
She won gold in the women's 200-meter individual medley at the 2018 Jakarta-Palembang Asian Games, setting a new Korean and Asian Games record time, and also took the silver medal in the 400-meter individual medley.
We actually got to meet with her last month at the Donga Swimming Competition, where the 25-year-old said her goal in Gwangju is to challenge for the world record.

"I was preparing for this upcoming championship since the Asian Games last year. Whether the time remaining is short or long,… I will get my fitness up step-by-step to get a good result in the end."

Well Hyeong-woo, let's hope to hear some good news from Gwangju soon.
Now, as the world's biggest swimming competition, it's sure to draw many spectators from around the world.
And I hear, there are many events being held to keep the participants and visitors entertained. aside from what's happening in the pool.

Yes, indeed. From traditional Korean music to a multicultural street festival, many events and performances have been prepared for visitors to Gwangju on the sidelines of the swimming competition.
According to the organizers, a 'market street' will be operated at Nambu University - the main venue of the FINA championships - from opening day, featuring many different performances and also food trucks.
Traditional art groups in Gwangju will collaborate to offer fushion style performances.
Originally performing on Saturdays at the city's main arts center, they will be putting on a show every day except for Monday during the competition.
The Gwangju Fringe Festival will be bigger than normal, hosting multicultural street parades and mime shows.

Well Hyeong-woo, I guess that will do it for now. Thank you for coming in today.

Always a pleasure. Thank you.

Now let's take a quick look at some other events that are taking place across South Korea.
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