'Keeper Lok keen for next shot at glory
GOALKEEPER Kevin Lok Kar-win seeks his second trophy when his team, South China, play Instant-Dict in the FA Cup final this afternoon at the Hong Kong Stadium.
The match-up is a repeat of the Viceroy Cup final two weeks ago at the same venue where the Caroliners beat the Dickies 3-0.
That victory meant a lot to the 24-year-old 'keeper as it was the first trophy he has won for South China.
'I played every minute from the first match to the final. I won the medal with my own effort. When I went up to the stand to receive the medal and trophy, it was the best moment of the season to me,' said Lok.
'Although we have won a number of titles since I joined South China four years ago, I was only a reserve in those competitions. I did not contribute much and they were not really my victories.
'The Viceroy Cup final also proved we could beat Instant-Dict, not only at Mongkok Stadium but also the Hong Kong Stadium.' Looking back over this season, Lok said he was satisfied with his own performance. 'I had the chance to play in every game after our former number-one 'keeper Iain [Hesford] left in December.' 'The more I play, the more confident I become. I admit I still make mistakes but I can feel I am improving.
'Maybe I am lucky. When I took over the place from Iain, our team began to play well.
'We did not start the season well and things became worse when the club released Lee Bullen and Aurelio da Silva.
'That means we had to adjust ourselves to the new foreign players again. It was a very difficult time for us.
'Fortunately, it did not take very long for us to click with our new teammates and we have been doing better and better.
'I've only lost a couple of games so far. I have to give the credit to my teammates.' His inclusion in the Hong Kong team under Brazilian coach Sebastiao Araujo was also a valuable experience.
'Frankly, I was very disappointed when I was not included in the coach's first list. However, I was called up later and given the chance to play in the Guangdong-Hong Kong Interport Cup and the Dynasty Cup. I was very happy,' he said.
'The Dynasty Cup was a great learning experience for me. It is not very often we get the chance to play against some of the best teams in Asia, like Japan, South Korea and China.' There have been many rumours surrounding South China's possible changes for the new season, including the departure of team director Peter Leung Shou-chi and a couple of key players, including midfielder Leslie Santos and forward Dale Tempest, and the appointment of Brazilian coaches.
Yet Lok said he has not been affected by the gossip and was looking forward to the new season.
'The rumours don't bother me much. I will still try my best in every game,' Lok said. 'I don't have any big dreams. I only want to do well in my club and the Hong Kong team.
'I have never thought about playing overseas though I would be very delighted if I could train with some of the best teams in the region. Hopefully, I can win many championships for my club. That's my ultimate goal.' The Hong Kong Footballer of the Year will be announced tomorrow and Lok is likely to be named one of the 11 top footballers.
'I lost in the Viceroy Cup Best Defender Award to my teammate Yau Kin-wai by two votes. It does not matter if I win any individual award [tomorrow] as long as I can win something for my club,' he said.