SOUTH Korea suffered another blow entering the Fiba Asia men's basketball championship when mainstay Kim Sun Hyung was suspended after getting involved in game-fixing scandal back home.
Kim was among 11 players from the Korean Basketball League being investigated for illegal gambling and match-fixing in a wide-scale probe that was announced by police on Tuesday.
The news came just two days after Kim suited up for the Korean national team in the 37th Jones Cup in Chinese Taipei, scoring five points including a three-pointer in an 82-70 victory over Gilas Pilipinas on August 31.
The SK Knights star, who also suited up for Korea in the 2013 Fiba Asia championship in Manila, stands accused of making illegal bets as a college student.
The many-time all-Star was subsequently suspended, according to Fiba.com, ruling him out of the Korean team's campaign in the 2015 Fiba Asia championship from September 23 to October 3 in Changsha, China.
Another mainstay, Yoon Ho Young, is also listed as doubtful for the Fiba Asia, the reason Korea has slipped two spots to No. 5 in the latest Fiba-Asia power rankings, supplanted by Gilas which finished second to Iran in the Jones Cup with its 6-2 (win-loss record).
Kim's alleged involvement in match-fixing is just the latest blow to the Korean team, which, despite the win over Gilas, struggled in the Jones Cup and finished a woeful fifth.
Last year, another Korean star, Kim Min Goo, figured in a car accident in the middle of the team's preparation for the Fiba World Cup. It was later revealed he was driving while intoxicated.