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North Korea’s excuse for losing to the U.S.: ‘We were hit by lightning’

Jun 28, 2011, 6:07 PM EDT

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It was just last June that the North Korean men’s soccer team, having been quickly ousted in a dismal showing in the men’s World Cup, was publicly scolded by government officials when they got back home. It was reported even that the head coach feared for his life. So you can forgive the North Korean women for a very creative excuse following their team’s 2-0 loss to the U.S. in the women’s World Cup on Tuesday.

According to coach Kim Kwang-min, his team lost because they were struck by lightning. Not during the match, mind you: but several days earlier.

“There were changes in the physical condition before the match. There were unexpected changes. Our players didn’t feel well. During training before we left Pyongyang some of our players suffered a minor accident. Some stayed in hospital and then came to Germany shortly before the competition. So they didn’t feel quite well.

“When we stayed in Pyongyang during training there was an unexpected accident so our team was not capable of playing. Our players were hit by lightning during a training match. More than five were hospitalised. The match was on 8 June.”

The United States team were clearly taken aback by the claim. “It’s the first we have heard about it,” said the striker Abby Wambach. The USA coach, Pia Sundhage, was also unaware of any such problems affecting their opponents.

You know, Korea is close enough to Japan that the team could have broken out the “We were affected by nuclear radiation” excuse, due to the tsunami nuclear reactor accident. But I’m sure they’re saving that one for their match with Sweden.

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North Korea blame lightning strike for defeat by USA [The Guardian]
Did North Korea’s Women’s Soccer Team Lose Because…Players Got Struck By Lightning? [Sports Grid]