Coach still wary of double trouble despite HK's warm-up clean sweep

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 28 June, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 28 June, 2009, 12:00am

Hong Kong coach Tony Choi Yuk-kwun remained cautious about a clean swept of all seven events at December's East Asian Games despite a successful week in the warm-up tournament.

Hong Kong clinched all three doubles titles at Aberdeen Sports Centre yesterday, three days after they won the mixed-team event at the Pre-East Asian Games Championships.

'As we can see from the mixed team event, we are very strong in singles, which means we can also dominate the two team events [men's women's] in December,' Choi said. 'But the doubles events remain a challenge despite our clean sweep today.

'South Korea and Japan know it will be difficult to beat us in singles, so have focused on their doubles players. Since doubles is not played on the professional tour, we can't spend too much time on it and in fact we had some tough games here.'

Choi said while singles required good skills coupled with a high level of fitness, doubles placed more emphasis on the partnership between the two players.

'The court is well covered in doubles because of two players and therefore it is difficult to win a point on fitness alone,' he said.

'Our target is to win four gold medals at the East Asian Games [the two singles and team events] and then we'll see how far we can go in the three doubles. Of course, if we can continue to make progress in the next couple of months, we certainly have a chance of sweeping all.'

In yesterday's men's doubles finals, Roger Ngan Lun-cheung and Dick Lau Siu-wai got off to a flying start when they defeated Lee Myeon-ho and Lee Seung-joon of South Korea 11-1, 11-4.

Rebecca Chiu Wing-yin and Joey Chan Ho-ling collected the second gold when they overcame compatriots Annie Au Wing-chi and Elise Ng Jia-yunn 11-7, 7-11, 11-7 in the women's event.

Ngan and Chiu then beat Au and her brother Leo Au Chun-ming 11-9, 10-11, 11-10 in the mixed doubles final.