06-03-2008 11:04
K-1 Fighter Choi Exempted From Army Service


Choi Hong-man
By Kang Seung-woo
Staff Reporter

K-1 fighter Choi Hong-man will be wearing boxing trunks instead of battle dress uniforms during the upcoming 26 months.

The Military Manpower Administration (MMA) announced Monday that the 2.18-meter giant was evaluated with a grade 5 in his second physical examination, meaning he will be exempt from military service.

The government office did not reveal the specific reason for his exemption, but it seems related with a tumor on his pituitary gland, which disallowed him to face Brock Lesnar last year.

In his first physical in 1999, he received a grade-4, which forces a draftee to be assigned to non-combat duty, and Choi, 27, reported to boot camp on April 21 of this year.

He was supposed to undergo four weeks of basic military training at the camp but was ordered to return home three days later.

At that time, the administration office also declined to discuss his release, saying it should protect his private information.

FEG (Fighting and Entertainment Group) Korea announced it will hold a press conference in four or five days after talking with Choi. In the conference, Choi, nicknamed "Techno Goliath,'' is also likely to discuss an operation on the brain tumor.

ksw@koreatimes.co.kr