Canada's Boutin 'scared for safety' after threats

Pyeongchang (South Korea) (AFP) - Canadian short-track speed skater Kim Boutin said Saturday that she had been "really scared" after receiving threats online following the disqualification of a South Korean rival at the Pyeongchang Olympics.

The 23-year-old finished the Games with a silver medal and two bronze and will be Canada's flagbearer for Sunday's closing ceremony, ending her Olympics on a high.

But she was subjected to abuse online during the Games from angry Korean fans who felt she should have been disqualified instead of home favourite Choi Min-jeong when they came together in the women's 500m final.

Boutin, who won bronze, revealed her distress at the treatment she had received.

"It was hard to speak about those emotions, I was really scared for my safety," Boutin said.

Boutin, who put her Twitter account into "protected" mode after a flood of abusive messages, said that standing on the podium after the race she felt "a mix of scared, angry and happy".

She added: "When you go to the Olympic Games you have to go in and expect the unexpected.

"It's difficult for me to understand. I think I didn't really understand the threats I was exposed to.

"The team rallied around me and I was protected from all those aspects. That is something that enabled me to get up the hill.

"I was able to overcome this and go on to win again."