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Chung Hyeon's impressive run in Australia sparks unexpected public interest in tennis

By Lim Chang-won Posted : January 24, 2018, 16:00 Updated : January 24, 2018, 16:00


SEOUL, Jan. 24 (Aju News) -- An impressive run by South Korean tennis star Chung Hyeon at the Australian Open sparked an unseasonal boom in sales of bags, rackets and other tennis-related goods at home.

Chung ranked top on the searching word list of Naver, the country's largest web-portal service after he beat Tennys Sandgren of the United States 3-0 (6-4, 7-6 (7-5), 6-3) in the quarterfinals match at Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne.

Of Naver's top 10 real-time search keywords, eight were related to tennis, reflecting a sudden increase in public attention to the season's first Grand Slam event as Chung become the first South Korean tennis player to reach the semifinals at a Grand Slam tournament.

Helped by his historic run, sales of tennis bags, gloves and other related goods rose sharply, according to 11STREET, a major online shopping mall based in Seoul. As Chung once said, tennis is not popular in South Korea.

Chung has produced his own fairy tale in Australia, stunning fourth-seeded Alexander Zverev and six-time Australian Open winner Novak Djokovic to become the first South Korean to play in any Grand Slam semifinals.

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