The Chief Executive, Mr Donald Tsang, today (September 12) presented the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region flag to the Hong Kong delegation to the 11th National Games of the People's Republic of China.
Held every four years, the National Games are the proving ground of top athletes from all over the country. About 50 delegations will take part in 33 sports events of the 11th National Games to be held in Shandong between October 16 and 28.
The Hong Kong SAR will send a 340-member delegation, comprising 230 athletes and 110 supporting and medical personnel to take part in 25 sports events of the 11th National Games, including swimming, water polo, athletics, badminton, baseball, boxing, canoeing, cycling, equestrian, fencing, gymnastics, handball, hockey, judo, sailing, windsurfing, shooting, table tennis, taekwondo, tennis, triathlon, weightlifting, wushu (taolu), short track speed skating and figure skating.
At the Flag Presentation Ceremony of the HKSAR Delegation to the 11th National Games of the People's Republic of China cum SINOPEC Cup Torch Relay held at the Kowloon Park Sports Centre today, the Chief Executive presented the HKSAR flag to the Secretary for Home Affairs and the head of the HKSAR Delegation to the 11th National Games, Mr Tsang Tak-sing. The Chief Executive then officiated at the light the torch ceremony, passing the torch which was brought from Beijing last month to the first torch bearer, the swimming athlete, Mr Jeffrey Lum to start the torch relay.
Based on the programme of the 11th National Games Organising Committee, the participating provincial cities and the two Special Administrative Regions can select five torch bearers to take part in the torch. These five torch bearers are athletes of the HKSAR Delegation to the 11th National Games, including Jeffrey Lum (swimming), Yip Pui-yin (badminton), Cynthia Lo (shooting), ALI Arif (hockey) and Cheung King-wai (cycling).
They relayed the torch in sequence, starting at the Kowloon Park Sports Centre, passing the park's main trail, Water Garden, Sculpture Walk and Hong Kong 2009 East Asian Games Handprint Wall for Sponsors & Volunteers before getting back to the sports centre.
Speaking at ceremony, Mr Tsang Tak-sing said the holding of the 11th National Games was of great significance as this year was the 50th Anniversary of the Games as well as the 60th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China.
He believed that the Hong Kong athletes would make use of the opportunity to exchange skills with Mainland elite athletes and to well prepare themselves for the East Asian Games to be held at the end of the year.
Other officiating guests at today's flag presentation ceremony cum torch relay include the deputy head of the delegation and Chairman of the Organising Committee, Mr Timothy Fok and the Director of the Leisure and Cultural Services and the deputy head of the delegation, Mrs Betty Fung.
Ends/Saturday, September 12, 2009