Sports for Hope Foundation Outstanding Junior Athlete Awards Kicks Off
New Cycle by Recognising 24 Nominated Athletes
Organised by the Hong Kong Sports Institute (HKSI), the Sports for Hope Foundation (SFHF) Outstanding Junior Athlete Awards (OJAA) presentation ceremony for the 1st quarter of 2017 took place today at the HKSI. Nine athletes were presented the Award and a special lighting ceremony was staged to kick off the 2017 award cycle.
The awardees were Chan Yin-chak (Badminton), Chan Yin-fei and Lee Chak-fung (Fencing), Chan Sin-yuk, Cheng Nga-ching, Lui Hiu-lam and Tang Yan-yi (Squash), and Poon Yat and Soo Wai-yam (Table Tennis).
Officiating guests included Miss Marie-Christine Lee, founder of the SFHF; Mr Andre Leung, Executive Member of the SFHF; Mr Pui Kwan-kay BBS MH, Vice-President of the Sports Federation & Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, China (SF&OC); Miss Chui Wai-wah, Committee Member of the Hong Kong Sports Press Association (HKSPA) and Mr Tony Choi Yuk-kwan MH, Deputy Chief Executive of the HKSI.
Table tennis athlete Poon Yat received her first OJAA after winning four medals at two major events this quarter. In the 2017 French Junior & Cadet Open, Poon brought home two bronze medals from cadet girls’ doubles and teams event. A few days later, she won another bronze in cadet girls’ singles and the champion in mini-cadet girls’ at the 2017 Swedish Junior & Cadet Open. She recalled, “In Sweden I had 13 matches in only seven hours but I was not nervous at all. I enjoyed every match and being in the middle of the court was like flying in the dream. I am just a beginner in the international arena and I need to keep improving myself. This Award is undoubtedly the best encouragement.” Poon also shared the stage with her teammate, Soo Wai-yam, who claimed the junior girls’ singles title at the 2016 ITTF World Junior Circuit Finals.
Three athletes including Ng Ki-lung and Wong Hong-yi (Tennis), and Leung Chung-pak (Cycling) were presented with Certificate of Merit. Ng Ki-lung impressed the judges by winning a bronze medal in the grade 3 boys’ singles event at the China Junior 4 Shenzhen. Ng was ranked 300th before the competition but he rewrote his own destiny – he marched to the final by defeating Korean and Japanese opponents who ranked 140th and 126th respectively. He said, “This is my best result so far and I am truly thankful for the recognition of the Foundation. I hope I can have more chances to participate and learn in the international competitions.”
Cyclist Leung Chung-pak, said, “It was my honour to receive the certificate as it proved that my hard work has paid off. Young athletes live a busy life. All of them have been working very hard to strike a balance between study and sports, and this Award recognises the effort everyone made in realising their sporting dreams.”
Starting from this quarter, the organiser presents a Certificate of Appreciation to junior athletes nominated by National Sports Associations as an encouragement. The Certificate of Appreciation were presented to 12 athletes from the Hong Kong Girls’ Youth Volleyball Team (Chan Hoi-ying, Chau Suet-yi, Cheung Hiu-nok, Chow Wing-tung, Choy Hoi-ting, Fung Man-chin, Fung Man-ching, Natalie Lam, Wong Wai-ting, Yick Wing-sum, Yim Wing-ni and Yip Hoi-tik) this quarter to appreciate their hard work in the sport.
Organised by the HKSI and sponsored by the Sports for Hope Foundation since 2012, with support from the SF&OC and the HKSPA, the OJAA recognises the achievements of outstanding local junior athletes under the age of 19 on a quarterly basis. Each recipient is presented with a cash prize of HK$2,500, a sports voucher worth HK$2,500 and a certificate.
The HKSI is the Government’s elite sport training systems delivery agent and is committed to providing an environment in which sports talent can be identified, nurtured, and developed to pursue excellence in the international sporting arena and to inspire potential athletes to pursue a full-time sports career.