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South Korea
Korean Ice Hockey Association
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  • Incorporated  1928
  • Joined the IIHF  July 25, 1960
  • 1,880  registered players
  • 23  registered clubs
  • President:  Gap Chul Park
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Hockey in South Korea
The earliest known hockey game in Korea took place in 1928 when the Yonsan Railway Club of Seoul faced the Tokyo University team. The members of this railway club organized informal matches and soon had a rival in the Kyungsung University team. A key administrator at this time was Chun Yoo-Ryang. A rudimentary form of the Korean Ice Hockey Association was founded in 1928. Two years later the Chosun Hockey League began play and Yonsei University was crowned the inaugural champion.

The modern Korea Ice Hockey Association was founded in 1947 with Choi Sun-Ik as President. The country joined the IIHF on July 25, 1963. The following year the Dongdaemun Rink was opened as the country's first artificial ice facility. In 1965 the first IIHF sanctioned match took place when a University team from Japan paid a visit.

The national team debuted with a seventh place finish at the 1979 "C" Pool World Championships. Korea remained at this level until 1996 when they were relegated to "D" Poo; though it would be a short stay as they returned to the "C" Pool in 1998. In 1984, to mark the opening of the new Taenung ice rink in Seoul, the South Korean National Team hosted an invitational tournament featuring the French club Viry-Chatillon, a team from Tokyo and the University of Alaska-Anchorage. The next season Seoul hosted the Asia-Oceania Junior Championships.

Domestically, ice hockey in South Korea has been dominated by University teams. The Yonsei and Kyunghee schools were the most proficient followed by Hangyang University, Korea University and Kwangwoon University. The first sign of professional hockey in the country emerged in 1993 when the semi-pro Seoktop team was formed. In 1995 the Korean Ice Hockey League was launched with the aforementioned clubs. In recent years, attendance for hockey games in South Korea has averaged about 4,000 fans, particularly when Yonsei University and Korea University are playing. The Korean army and some major corporations also have their own hockey teams.

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