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Looking ahead 2018

Pyeongchang Winter Olympics face uphill battle for success

Outlook clouded by North Korean belligerence and Chinese ban on tour groups

| China
There will be much pressure on South Korea's Olympic medal hopefuls such as short-track skaters Shim Suk-hee, left, and Choi Min-jeong, right.   © Reuters

The 1988 Seoul Olympic Games marked a successful coming-out party for newly democratic South Korea, even though they are largely remembered for the Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson's victory in the men's 100m race before testing positive for drugs.

With just a few weeks to go before the Feb. 9 start of the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, the hosts face all the usual concerns, such as ticket sales, accommodation and national medal targets. But some of their worries are uniquely South Korean.

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