Hyundai Capital has been struggling with the setter problem. After the 2017-2018 season, which took first place in the regular league, KEPCO gave up Noh Jae-wook, the main setter, as a compensation player for recruiting outside heater Jeon Kwang-in, who was a free agent (FA). Setter Lee Seung-won, who led the 2018-2019 season championship match, left the team due to a trade during the 2020-2021 season. That season, he ambitiously traded 195 cm tall setter Kim Myeong-gwan, but it took a lot of trial and error.
The start of the season wasn’t good either. Kim Myung-gwan has been away for a while due to an off-season injury. Lee Won-jung, who was discharged from the Armed Forces Sports Corps 토토 (Sangmu), started as a starter, but he often faltered. He kept his position until the beginning of the second round, and Kim Myung-gwan stepped on the court as the first starter in the Woori Card match on the 14th of last month.
Despite the five consecutive victories, Choi Tae-woong, manager of Hyundai Capital, made a change. In the 3rd round home game against Woori Card on the 14th, 190cm rookie setter Lee Hyun-seung was put up as a starter. It was his first start in the Hyundai Capital uniform as the second overall pick in the 2022-2023 rookie draft.
Hyundai Capital coach Choi Tae-woong said until the beginning of the season, “There are still areas to be refined,” but from the end of the second round, he gradually gained opportunities through substitutions and took command of the game full-time.
I played the game boldly. It created several attack options such as time difference and quick attack. There were times when breathing was not right, but the strikers solved it themselves and gave strength to the newcomer. Opposite spiker Heo Soo-bong, outside heater Jeon Gwang-in, and Oriole posted 19, 17, and 16 points with 31.18%, 21.51%, and 20.43% attack shares, respectively. Middle blocker Choi Min-ho also scored 9 points with a 12.9% share.
The success rate was also high. The team attack success rate was 54.84%. No player had a success rate lower than 50%. Thanks to the even performance, Hyundai Capital ran 6 consecutive wins. Lee Hyeon-seung, who participated in the broadcast interview as a distinguished player, confidently said, “I was so nervous from the day before that I was stupid,” but said, “My strengths are my ability to use the center well and toss speed quickly.”
Lee Hyun-seung has been through the national team by age. As a promising player, he caught the attention of professional coaches from his male high school days to after entering Hanyang University. It remains to be seen whether it will become another driving force for Hyundai Capital, which has risen to the top in three seasons after the declaration of rebuilding.