Athlete of the week

PUBLISHED : Monday, 08 October, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 08 October, 2007, 12:00am

Each week we talk to HK's brightest and best

Name Francis Yan Ho-chun

School Year Two marketing student at Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU)

Sport Swimming

Achievements: Yan, 21, is PolyU's best athlete of the year. He participated in the Inter-City Games in China earlier this year.

He also won the University Sports Federation of Hong Kong's most valuable player award in the swimming category this year. He represented the Hong Kong national team at the 2007 World University Games in Bangkok.

He is now ranked first in the 50-metre freestyle event in Hong Kong.

Soundbite: 'I started swimming because of my family. They encouraged me to swim when I was 10 and I joined the national youth team when I was 15,' says Yan.

'I love the feeling of being a representative of Hong Kong. I'm so proud to be a national team member.

'It has been tough to balance school exams with intensive training in the pool. I train six days a week; it is a very tight schedule. I won't give up because I have put so much effort into my swimming and I don't want my hard work to be wasted.'

From his coach: 'He has good strength and speed. However, his fundamental skills are a little weak,' says Chan Yiu-hoi, head swimming coach at the Hong Kong Sports Institute. 'Sometimes, it's hard for him to achieve his ambitions. I believe there's room for improvement.'

Ambitions: 'I hope to break a Hong Kong record at the World University Games,' Yan says. 'I want to join the 2008 Beijing Olympics squad and help add to Hong Kong's medal haul.'