(Reuters) - South Korea will skip all three stages of the Archery World Cup as COVID-19 travel restrictions would impact their preparations ahead of the Tokyo Olympics, World Archery has confirmed.
South Korea is the most dominant side in the sport with 39 Olympic medals - 23 among them golds. At the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games, athletes of the Asian country won gold in every single archery event.
"It's a real bummer," Kang Chae-young, who won the women's recurve gold in the 2019 World Cup, was quoted as saying by World Archery.
"It would have been a good opportunity to strengthen our team for the upcoming Olympics."
The qualification for the first stage of the 2021 Archery World Cup starts on Tuesday in Guatemala City while the second and third stages will be held in Lausanne next month and Paris in June.
As per COVID-19 protocols for travellers entering South Korea, the athletes would have been required to undergo 14-day hotel quarantine after the events.
(Reporting by Sudipto Ganguly in Mumbai; editing by Christian Radnedge)