South Korean soccer star, Park Eun-Seon, has been asked to undergo a gender test, after she was accused of being a man by other teams in her league.
Six rival teams from the South Korean women’s league have threatened to boycott, if Park continues to play with being examined.
Park has overcome a slump in form over the last few years to rekindle her goal-scoring touch. Last season, Park was the top scorer in the league with 19 goals in just 22 games, which helped her side, Seoul City Hall Amazones, to a second place finish.
The club’s manager, Seo Jung-ho, has since responded to these accusations, and has even accused it of being a “conspiracy,” which has been developed because of Park’s incredible upheaval in performance.
Park, who weighs 163 pounds and is 5 foot 9 inches tall, previously played at the 2004 Olympics, and she has taken to her Facebook page to vent her feelings on the matter.
The athlete wrote:
My heart aches and it is humiliating. I’ve been through gender tests many times and competed in the World Cup and the Olympics.
I know these people are trying to destroy me… In the past, I would have thrown my hands up and left, but I’ve worked so hard to get to this point, and I will not give up so easily.
Seoul City Sports Council’s lawyers have also released a statement explaining that the matter is already closed in their eyes.
CNN have reported that the statement read:
Park’s gender was tested by Korean Football Association in 2004 when she was selected to [the] national team for [the] Athens Olympic.
The demand from coaches from six different clubs to test the gender of Park again is double jeopardy.
This is betraying the fundamental human rights of a player which should be protected at all means.
Kim Joon-Soo, who is the general secretary of the Seoul Sports Council then added that they have “no intention of accepting the gender verification test just to stop the boycott.”
However Soo did admit, “But if it is needed for Park to compete in an international game and under specific regulations of FIFA, we will consider it.”
Politicians have since become involved in the spat, which is eerily similar to that of South African runner, Caster Semenya, which took place in 2009, with Seoul’s mayor, Park Won-soon tweeting, “As the father of a daughter, I will do my best to protect Park Eun-seon’s human rights.”
[Image via Foto011/Shutterstock]