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Top triathletes meet at Central Harbourfront for Olympic qualification

  • 2024-04-15
  • The Young Reporter
  • By: AO Wei Ying Vinci、LAI Uen LingEdited by: Ka Man Wong
  • 2024-04-15

More than 120 athletes from 37 regions compete in the second 2024 World Triathlon Cup. The event at Central Harbourfront is held on the hottest March day on record at 31.5 degrees Celsius. Apart from the intense competition among elite athletes in the morning, there are also the super sprint races for young athletes and a post-race carnival which is open to everyone.

Society

First international racketlon tournament in HK a hit with local players

Hong Kong hosted its first international racketlon tournament last weekend, with players saying they hope the sport will catch on in the city. Racketlon is a combination of four racket sports: table tennis, badminton, squash and tennis. They are played in consecutive order in a single match, with each carrying up to 21 points. Those who obtain the highest cumulative points win. “Laying groundwork through this first competition, this sport could spread across Asia,” said Steven Cheng, Chairman of the Hong Kong Racketlon Association and director of the tournament. International racketlon tournaments had been held in Thailand, Poland, Spain and the United Kingdom. “Hong Kong is the best place in the world for racketlon,” said Stephanie Chung, 33, who won the women’s singles. “Within a 15 minute drive, I can probably find six to 10 places to play all four racket sports. That’s extremely rare.” Chung said that in New York City, she had to drive for an hour and still could not find a real badminton court. “I have a feeling Hong Kong has the potential to become the No.1 racketlon place in the world,” Chung added. Cheng said that the government could provide more venues for future racketlon tournaments. “This year, there are players from 17 countries, which I think helped promote Hong Kong as an international city,” said Cheng. “We hope that the government could allocate more resources to us, allow racketlon tournaments to be held yearly.” One of the difficulties promoting racketlon is that not everyone knows how to play all four sports, said Esther Ma, founder of Harvest Sky Sport Education and Management Company and the leading public relations personnel for the tournament. “Squash is becoming very popular now, and a lot of kids are doing very well in squash, but badminton is more underrepresented, …

Society

Voting for Hong Kong Sports Stars Awards starts

  • The Young Reporter
  • By: ZHANG Yiping、CHEN Yik NamEdited by: James Ezekiel Kalaw MODESTO
  • 2024-02-18

Reported by Zoey Zhang and Nansen Chen Yik-nam Public voting for the Hong Kong Sports Stars Awards, the city's most prestigious awards for local athletes, started Friday and lasts until March 17. Over 200 nominated athletes gathered at Olympian City on Saturday, calling out to the public for votes. A total of 118 athletes and sports teams were nominated by 54 National Sports Associations, according to the Sports Federation and Olympic Committee of Hong Kong. Hong Kong athletes achieved impressive results on the world stage in 2023. Local athletes bagged 53 medals at the recent Asian Games in Hangzhou, including eight gold, 16 silver and 29 bronze medals, ranking 12th among all countries and regions. There has been a 20% increase in the number of nominees compared to the previous year when 96 athletes were nominated, Edgar Yang Joe-tsi, Honorary Secretary General of the federation, said at the press conference. The four categories of awards this year are for men, women, sports combination and team only sport. “We will be happy if we get it, but everyone deserves the reward,” said Joy Hwang Join, a member of the Cheerleading Federation of Hong Kong, who was nominated for the second time since 2022. “We are nervous and scared but happy to be here,” said her teammate Akira Escudero Takato. “For us, it's our second nomination. For Max, it's his third nomination, the first being back in 2004,” said Kenny Chan Ka-kin, referring to cycle-ball teammate Max Ho Wing-tai. “Last year, we ranked third in online voting. We hope to get the first place this year, to a higher level, even the second is acceptable,” said Ho. Winners are determined by votes from a judging panel made up of seven representatives from different associations, which counts for 50% of the score, as …

Society

Marathon organisers urge runners to monitor their conditions following a death

  • The Young Reporter
  • By: ZHAO Runtong、LIU YutongEdited by: Ji Youn Lee、Juncong SHUAI
  • 2024-01-23

  Organisers of the annual Standard Chartered Marathon have reminded runners to “closely monitor their post-race physical condition and allow themselves recovery after the race.” The warning came after a 30-year-old participant collapsed at Tin Hau MTR station following the race. There were multiple injuries, according to the Hospital Authority. At 4 pm yesterday, a total of 39 runners had been admitted to hospital, with one death pending investigation and one in critical condition due to heart overload. As of Monday, he is still receiving medical treatment in Ruttonjee Hospital. The Hong Kong, China Association of Athletics Affiliates and Standard Chartered Bank (Hong Kong) Limited stated their deepest condolences to the family of the deceased athlete and offered assistance as necessary. “Overexertion, heat stress, dehydration and cardiovascular issues could all be the cause of death in a marathon," said Dr. Hon Sze-sze, Principal Coordinator of Sports Program at Hong Kong Baptist University, "In order to avoid injuries, we should do foot preparation activities before the race and maintain appropriate fluid intake during the marathon.. If we feel ill, we must stop running  to avoid overexertion,” she added. The Standard Chartered Marathon kicked off at Nathan Road in Tsim Sha Tsui at 6 am on Sunday. It included a full marathon, a half marathon, and a 10-kilometre challenge. Kenyan runner Seroi Anderson Saitoti, 31, won the men's overall full marathon with a time of 2 hours, 12 minutes and 50 seconds. Medina Armino, 26, from Ethiopia won the women’s overall full marathon with a time of 2 hours, 28 minutes and 47 seconds. Local athlete Yiu Kit-ching, 35, performed very well with a time of 2 hours 41 minutes and 9 seconds. Local runner, Wong Kai-lok, 28, said the route of the Standard Chartered Marathon is mostly mountain roads, which are more …

Society

Overcoming Hurdles on the Trail: Two Teachers' Triumphs and Tribulations at Translantau 2023

  • By: KONG Tsz YuenEdited by: Ming Min AW YONG、Kei Tung LAM
  • 2023-12-13

On the brisk morning of Saturday, Nov. 11, near Mui Wo Market, under a cloudy sky and a gentle breeze of 23C, over 780 runners were palpable and eagerly awaiting the start of the Translantau race. Cheers erupted as the starting gun echoed, capturing the moment of a challenging journey for Grace Law and Kam Wong. In 2023, the fastest woman in the 35–39 age group, Eszter Csillag, completed the Translantau 100 km race in 13 hours and 50 minutes. Law hoped to finish within 20 hours and 30 minutes.  Grace Law, 35, a secondary school English teacher, aims to complete her 100-kilometre race, while Kam Wong, 58, a secondary school PE teacher, aims to complete the 50-kilometre Translantau race in 12 hours without injuries. Law and Wong dedicated significant time to preparing for the race, including researching energy gels for the last six months and developing customised food approaches, like Onigiri, a plant-based snack with a sour and sweet flavour resistant to spoilage. Besides food preparation, Law has also divided the route and exercised several times in various conditions, including on the road down the mountain during an evening downpour. At the same time, Wong challenged herself by walking 27 kilometres on the road near her home,  more than she had ever walked before, making her doubt if she could finish the upcoming 50-kilometre race. Undeterred by the challenges of the rocky terrain, Law walked through Kau Ling Chung, determined to reach her destination in Tai O. Even though she witnessed others vomiting along the way, Law stayed strong and continued on the race. "My psychological quality seems to be better," she said. Based on the GPS tracking runners ' progress, the organiser's live truck reported that Law was heading to Ngong Ping. Considering her previous checkpoint time, it …

Society

For this Filipino domestic helper dragon boat team in Hong Kong, paddling empowers their community and women

  • By: Jemima BadajosEdited by: Wisha LIMBU
  • 2023-12-12

As the Discovery Bay Dragon Boat Gala 2023 kicked off at Tai Pak Beach, it was a homecoming for Filipino Dynamo, a Filipino domestic helper dragon boat team in Hong Kong, as they were going to compete where they first began. Filipino Dynamo was first founded in January 2018 by Liza Avelino, a Filipino domestic helper who used to compete in a mixed dragon boat team. She wanted to start a team of her own, composed of female Filipino domestic helpers.  When it first started, the team recruited helpers who had little to no experience in paddling. Over the years, Filipino Dynamo has proved itself on a competitive level, recently winning 1st runner-up in the Sinopec Ladies Race at the Gala. Although dragon boating has been around for more than a thousand years, Hong Kong has propelled it forward into a ‘modern sport’. This year, 43 local and international dragon boat races were held, according to the Dragon Boat Hong Kong. The Filipino Dynamo team aims to join at least one race every season. However, dragon boat racing is also an expensive sport. To compete in the Discovery Bay Dragon Boat Gala, the ladies race category alone costs HK$3,800 to register. Without a dragon boat and parking space licence, the group also has to rely on sponsorships and club membership fees to rent out boats for water training. Most domestic helpers have Sundays as their day off, with plenty that can be seen gathering with their friends in public areas. By law, domestic helpers are required to have a 24-hour rest period every week. But for Filipino Dynamo members, they spend their one day-off training for the next race. Their training regime consists of a mix of yoga, circuit, and strength training on land and paddling techniques in water.  With …

Society

Hong Kong holds a 2-2 Draw against Turkmenistan in Intense World Cup Qualifier

  • By: Ben Rong LiEdited by: Aruzhan ZEINULLA、Ming Min AW YONG
  • 2023-11-28

Hong Kong faced Turkmenistan last Tuesday in a crucial match for the 2026 FIFA World Cup Asian qualifiers in the second round at Hong Kong Stadium. Hong Kong tied 2-2 despite trailing twice. Ranked just nine places lower than their opponents, Hong Kong fielded a strong lineup, including the Kitchee combination of Chan Shinichi and Azevedo Pedreira Fernando Augusto on the left flank.  Everton Camargo, making a return, played in the centre alongside striker Udebuluzor Michael Chibuikem, while An Wing-Kwan started on the bench. Hong Kong captain Yip Hung-fai guarded the goal, with Leung Nok Hang and Lo Kwan Yee in central defence. The midfield featured Wong Wai, Chan Siu-Kwan, and Chan Chun-lok for the attack.  6,601 supporters chanted inspiring slogans from the stands. Among them were approximately 20 Turkmenistan fans.  Early in the game, Hong Kong conceded a goal in the 4th minute when Turkmenistan capitalised on a defensive vulnerability. Ruslan Kamilyevich Mingazov, Turkmenistan midfield chipped the ball over the goalkeeper, putting Turkmenistan in the lead. However, Hong Kong equalised in the eighth minute through Wong Wai's header from Yu Chun Nam's cross. The team then gained momentum and launched a fierce attack.  In the 21st minute, Wong Wai's free-kick found Chen Zhaojun, who scored with a header, but the referee decided it was offside despite protests from the home crowd. Turkmenistan also had an offside goal in the first half. In the 36th minute, Mamedov outjumped Yu Chun-nam to head the ball into the net, giving Turkmenistan a 2-1 lead.  Hong Kong had opportunities to level the score, with Everton's shot was blocked and Chan Chun Lok hitting the crossbar from a corner kick.  Coach Anderson brought on An Wing-kwan to strengthen the attack, and in the 65th minute, Wong Wai's free-kick found An Wing-kwan, whose header was …

Society

Policy Address 2023: Hong Kong to encourage elite athlete development, promote sporting events to public

  • By: Yau To LUMEdited by: Kin Hou POON、Tsz Yin HO
  • 2023-10-25

In his 2023 Policy Address, Chief Executive John Lee aims to continue to foster sports growth in Hong Kong by supporting elite sports, improving professionalism, and promoting sports in the community to develop the city as a centre for key international sporting events, as well as expanding the sports sector. To achieve the vision, Lee said that a new Hong Kong Sport Institute building will be completed in mid-2024, providing advanced training facilities for elite athletes. “In the recent Asian Games in Hangzhou, Hong Kong won a record high of 53 medals, and the government will continue to promote sports development in Hong Kong,” Lee said. Lee also stated that he would like to popularise sporting events among the general public in order to improve the city's overall sports growth. Cheng Tsz-lam, 26, a member of Hong Kong’s women’s kabaddi team, said the facilities could help the elite athletes who played minor sports.  “Minor sports players who cannot find a place with the correct size requirement for training can use the new training facilities that will be built in the coming years as a place for daily training," Cheng said.  Lee also said the Culture, Sports, and Tourism Bureau will continue implementing the 10-year development blueprint for sports and recreation facilities, which provide sports and recreation facilities such as sports centres, grounds, and parks, including a swimming pool suitable for hosting international competitions and an arena with fencing training and competition facilities.  The government will also cooperate with the Sports Federation and Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, China in 2024 to offer coaches more professional training and internship opportunities. Cyclist Ceci Lee Sze-wing, 22, who won a silver medal in this year’s Asian Games, thinks there is an alternative way to enhance professionalism.  “If they can invite foreign teams or …

Society

Canada's Leylah Fernandez wins the Hong Kong Tennis Open Title 2023

  • By: Jemima BadajosEdited by: Rajnandini PANDEY
  • 2023-10-21

The 6th Prudential Hong Kong Tennis Open concluded on Sunday with 21-year-old Leylah Fernandez from Canada taking her first title of the 2023 season at the women’s singles, beating Czech Republic's Katerina Siniakova.

Society

Hong Kong FIA World RX Finale to be held next month

  • By: Yau To LUMEdited by: Ka Ki FUNG
  • 2023-10-18

Hong Kong will be hosting the FIA World Rallycross Championship Finale for the first time at the Central Harbourfront Event Space from 10-12 November . It is the city’s first motorsport race since the Formula-E race was held in 2019 and the first-ever World Rallycross city race. The season finale is certified by the Hong Kong SAR government as a Major Sports Event, also known as the “M” Mark Event. It is also the first international all-electric motorsport competition in the Asia-Pacific region. Leslie Wong, CEO of World RX Hong Kong Management Limited, expressed his gratitude for the contribution from the government. “The support from the government is really strong in which they are responding with whatever they can to help organize this championship,” Wong said in a press conference. Wong added that the season finale would lead to the development of a track in Hong Kong to nurture local competitive drivers. "I would say hopefully the path or the future development of motorsports is that we will have our own permanent racecourse in Hong Kong, but it will be a long way, and I hope this is the first step towards it," he said. The circuit in Hong Kong would be around 1.2 km long, composed of 37% alternating gravel and 63% asphalt sections, the latter of which will be all closed public roads. Klara Andersson started her competitive career in 2021 and is the only woman among ten drivers competing in the finale next month. “This will be the first city centre race, I think it's really inspiring and also the first time for an all-electric motorsport competition to be held in Asia Pacific. It's a lot of excitement and I really think that we will put on a good show,” she said. The young driver also recommends …