athlete of the week
Each week we talk to HK's brightest and best
Name Lee Tsun-sang
School Choi Jun School
Grade Form Four
Mentally handicapped swimmer Tsun-sang, 16, first represented Hong Kong at the Ninth Far East and South Pacific Games for the Disabled (Fespic Games) in 2006.
He won the Kong Sports Institute Outstanding Junior Athlete Awards for his excellent performance at the fourth Inas-Fid Open European Swimming Championships, taking two silver and two bronze medals.
'I started swimming when I was seven.
'I feel like a fish when I'm swimming. It is so free and relaxing. Gradually, it went from something I did for leisure to something I trained at. I have to train 16 hours a week, from Monday to Saturday. It is really harsh. But it is worth it because winning awards makes me happy. Those medals help boost my confidence in the upcoming competitions.
'I also love swimming because it allows me to travel overseas for competitions. I've been to lots of countries and I love Britain the most.
'I started to train as a professional swimmer about a year ago. I have to thank my coach, who helped me improve. She has taught me a lot about nutrition. I didn't realise what I eat is so important for my swimming. I started to be aware of what I eat and I'm healthier and stronger now.'
From his coach
'Tsun-sang is still young and his body is perfect for backstroke. He isn't afraid of hard work and goes along with my training program. I believe there is still a lot of room for improvement though,' coach Ni Chaoyang says.
'I aim to break all the Hong Kong men's backstroke records for the mentally challenged and hope to get medals for Hong Kong at the second Inas-Fid Global Games next year. My ultimate goal is to attend the London Paralympics in 2012.'