Six gold, nine venues and a quick dash...
The following is issued on behalf of the 2009 East Asian Games (Hong Kong) Ltd.:
It was the day (December 5) that sporting excellence was acknowledged and six golds were presented. And it was also a day where the final medal winner, Hong Kong's 15-red snooker trio, had to make a quick dash across the harbour to the spectacular opening ceremony in Tsim Sha Tsui.
Day Four of the Fifth East Asian Games, currently underway at full throttle in Hong Kong, saw action spread far and wide across the territory .
From the familiar confines of venues used for cue sports, basketball, volleyball and table tennis, the Games has now spread to the Hong Kong Squash Centre, the wide open spaces of the Hong Kong Stadium for rugby sevens, the recently-opened BMX park in Kwai Chung and the hockey grounds in King’s Park.
The day's and Hong Kong's first gold went to BMX rider Steven Patrick Marie Josee Wong who covered the ups-and-downs circuit in the men's elite dash in 30.181 seconds.
Five minutes later China's Ma Liyun had an easy ride to gold in the BMX women's elite final. She simply rushed for the ticker tape a full second in front of her Japanese rival Ayaka Miwa.
Of the three golds that dawned in the cue sports arena, Hong Kong stepped up once -- in the men's 15-red snooker team contest. China's Tian Pengfei overcame his countrymen Yu Delu for 15-red snooker singles title and in the English billiards singles competition it was heartbreak for Hong Kong's Eric Lee who lost by a nose to Hwang Chul Ho of Korea and had to settle for a silver.
Hong Kong's favourite Marco Fu Ka-chun, a member of the triumphant trio, said he had the audience to thank for encouraging them on.
"They simply shouted to us to 'add fuel' and aim for gold. My team-mates, Chan Kwok-ming and Fung Kwok-wai, wish to thank them for those so useful words of encouragement," he said.
The final gold of the day went to crack shot Jin Jong Oh of Korea in the men's 10-metre air pistol finals with a score of 685.8 points.
The two basketball matches yesterday (December 5) saw the men's Group A between Macau and China a one-sided affair. The stronger Chinese had an encouraging 107-36 score. In the men's Group B match between Mongolia and Chinese Taipei, the score was closer at 132-94 in the away's team favour.
King's Park hockey ground was the scene of an 8-0 romp for the Japanese women's team when they met the girls from Hong Kong and the easy 9-0 lesson for the Chinese Taipei women from the more experienced Korean team.
In the squash courts the Hong Kong flag dominated all four semi-final clashes -two men's and two women's. The gold awaits the final showdown today (December 6).
After keeping the floors of the Queen Elizabeth Stadium busy with eight qualifying matches, the curtains will go up today to a clash of paddling might: China's women team take on Hong Kong and the Chinese men's team meet the Koreans on the other side of the table.
Finally, the wide expense of the Hong Kong Stadium saw 15 rugby sevens encounters where some result were close, while some were laughably embarrassing. It was an atmosphere like the annual carnival...minus the usual rumbustious crowd.
Ends/Sunday, December 6, 2009