Athletes, gymnasts gaining support
By NORIDEEN KITCHELL
ATHLETICS and gymnastics - under scrutiny by the Hong Kong Sports Institute - are likely to maintain the support of the territory's centre for elite athletes.
The two sports were in danger of losing their HKSI status after failing to attain any reasonable results on the international stage. The Institute is due to review their sponsorship programme in the coming weeks.
However, Institute director Dr Dennis Whitby yesterday expressed his satisfaction with the progress of the two sports over the last six months and said he would recommend their retention in the HKSI programme.
'Athletics and gymnastics are still not where we want them to be but as long as they are moving up, there is no justification to drop them,' said Whitby.
'There has been a big turnaround in gymnastics and their coaches are doing a good job, and in athletics we've managed to build a good working relationship between the Institute, the HKAAA and sponsors Watson's.
'I would propose we keep both sports but the final decision is not mine, it would be decided by the management committee of the Institute.' Meanwhile, woman hurdler Chan Sau-ying collected $34,000 for breaking the A standard in the 100 metres hurdles in the Watson's athletics awards programme.
The 23-year-old University of Southern California student clocked 13.32 seconds in a US track meeting on May 6, beating the performance standard by 0.28 of a second.
Cheung Man-lo pocketed $4,000 for beating the C standard in the women's 400 metres hurdles and another $3,000 for breaking the event's record thrice this season.
Woman triple jumper Pauline Lee Po-ling and junior middle distance runner Alli Li Yin-yee received $4,000 each for beating the C standards and Maggie Chan Man-yee also got $4,000 for breaking the 5,000 metres record four times this season.