Jakarta: Jeon Hee-sook defended her title in women's individual foil on Monday, prolonging compatriot Nam Hyun-hee's wait to become South Korea's most decorated Asian Games athlete on Monday.
Both Park Tae-hwan and Nam have six Asiad golds and with the male swimmer skipping the Games citing indifferent form, the fencer has a golden opportunity to surge ahead in Jakarta.
She, however, faltered in her first attempt, losing 15-7 to Jeon in the round of 16 at the Jakarta Convention Centre.
Jeon surged 13-3 ahead and then focused on protecting the lead, while Nam, in her fifth and final Asian Games, scored five consecutive points but never looked threatening.
Her next chance to win a gold will come in Thursday's team event.
South Koreans fans would probably have preferred an all-Korean final and Nam, 36, said she too wanted to avoid meeting Jeon so early in the competition.
"This is my last Asian Games and I wanted to win a medal in my last individual event even if it was not a gold," added Nam, who won the event at the 2006 and 2010 Games.
Jeon, who won the team foil bronze in the London 2012 Olympics, beat China's Fu Yiting 8-3 in the final as South Korea won their fourth consecutive Asian title.
The 34-year-old also thanked Nam for cheering her on.
"I could hear her clearly. I was really grateful for that," she said.
The all-Korea final happened in men's individual sabre instead where Gu Bon-gil pipped Oh Sang-uk 15-14 for his third successive Asian Games title.
South Korea have targeted eight out of 12 fencing golds, and a total of 65, which they hope will be enough to beat Japan to second place in the medal table behind China. (Reporting by Amlan Chakraborty in Jakarta; editing by Christian Radnedge)