Bae Sang-Moon is required to do two years military service after his appeal was rejected.
The two-time PGA TOUR winner has been forced to put his career on hold as all able-bodied men aged 18-35 are required to do two years in the South Korean military. Bae, aged 29, had been using a permit to compete in America but a court has ruled he will not be receiving special consideration. Korea’s Military Manpower Association – there is something about that name – can allow athletes to avoid conscription but Bae has not made the cut.
Bae will be given the opportunity to return to the tour when his service has been completed. A change in tour regulations means that a player who has “mandatory obligations” can apply for exempt status and there is little doubt we will see the world number 91 again.
The South Korean has taken home $2 million in prize money this year, a far reach from the $130 he will earn each month in the military. The golfer will be joining 690,000 active personnel and we wish him all the best as he starts his training this week.
We’re going to miss you Bae.