After a 30-hour journey, the Hong Kong Youth Olympic Games Delegation finally arrived in Buenos Aires, Argentina on Thursday. The Games officially begin today with opening ceremony, with competitions beginning tomorrow. Fencer Kaylin Hsieh Sin-yan will act as Hong Kong’s flag-bearer, and lead out the city’s 24 other athletes.
Teams from 206 countries will participate in the games, so our athletes face a lot of competition. Let’s take a look at who’s in the running.
Addis Wong Lok-hei is the only representative of the Hong Kong athletics team at the Games. The 17-year-old will compete in Men’s 110m Hurdles on October 13. In May this year, the teen hurdler brought home a silver medal from the Morocco Gymnasiade 2018 and a bronze medal from the All China Youth (Under 18) Athletics Championships.
Hong Kong women’s beach handball team has nine members ranging from 15 to 18 years old. They will face Venezuela in the first match of the preliminary round on October 8.
Fifteen-year-old Edgar Fung Ho-yuen earned his spot at the Youth Olympics Jumping Individual event after winning the 2018 Youth Olympic Games Selection Trial at the Thai Polo & Equestrian Club in June. At the 2014 Games in Nanjing, Hong Kong’s representative Lennard Chiang finished fifth in the team competition and eighth in the individual, the city
Four athletes will represent the city in the individual and mixed continental team events. Epee fencer Kaylin Hsieh Sin-yan, 17, is Hong Kong’s greatest medal hope, as she was crowned the cadet world champion in April. She also won an individual bronze medal at the Asian Fencing Championships in June, and a team bronze medal at the Jakarta Asian Games in August. Sixteen-year-old Christelle Joy Ko will be the first Hong Kong athlete to compete at the Youth Olympics, when she takes part in the women’s foil individual event on October 7. Sabre fencer Gigi Ma Ho-chee, 17, the reigning Asian cadet champion, will fence on October 9 in the women’s sabre individual event. Also on October 9, Paco Chan Pak-hei will take part in the men’s foil individual event.
The fencers will also participate in the mixed continental team event on Oct 10, where teams are formed based on their ranking in the individual event.
Wong Wai-chun, 18, will represent Hong Kong in the Junior Men’s Single Sculls on October 7. Wong originally lost his ticket to the Games after finishing fourth in the Asian Junior Asian Rowing Junior Championships - only the top three athletes qualified - but gained a place when a rower from Uzbekistan pulled out. He will face strong competitors from the US and Germany, who are the new world record-holders.
The four athletes competing in the aquatics events have all set new records in Hong Kong over the past two years. Sixteen-year-old Tinky Ho Nam-wai, who won bronze in the women’s 4x200m freestyle relay at the Jakarta Asian Games, will compete in freestyle events of four distances at the Youth Olympics. Natalie Kan Cheuk-tung, 16, set a new Hong Kong record for women’s 50m backstroke last year. She will take part in seven events at the Games, including backstroke, breaststroke, butterfly and individual medley. Seventeen-year-old Nicholas Lim Owen Zhaoguang, who broke a 16-year record in the men’s 200m butterfly in June, will compete in the butterfly events, and Marcus Mok Kai-tik, 17, will race in backstroke, breaststroke and individual medley.
Karisa Lee Ka-yee, 18, who won gold in the women’s singles event at the 2017 Swedish Junior & Cadet Open, qualified for the Youth Games after taking first place at the 2018 Youth Olympics Qualification. She will compete in the women’s singles on October 7.
Hong Kong will be represented in both the women’s and men’s events; 16-year-old Lo Ho-yan came second in the women’s team event at the 2018 ASTC Hong Kong Triathlon Junior Asian Championships and will compete on October 7, while Hung Tik-long, 17, will make his appearance on October 8.
Another medal hope for Hong Kong is 15-year-old Mak Cheuk-wing, a two-time medallist at the Junior World Windsurfing Championships. She will compete in the women’s Windsurfer - Techno 293+ on October 7. Leung Pui-hei, 18, will take part in men’s Windsurfer - Techno 293+ on the same day.