Wilson set to take the plunge

PUBLISHED : Friday, 12 November, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 12 November, 2010, 12:00am

Swimmer Hannah Wilson was brimming with confidence when she attended the Hong Kong delegation flag-raising ceremony at the athletes' village yesterday, but said she would put team honour ahead of individual glory.

Wilson, who won two gold medals at the World University Games in Belgrade last year, returned to Hong Kong on Monday from California where she is in her final year of study at UC Berkeley.

'It will be really nice to get a medal [at the Asian Games],' said the 21-year-old. 'Last time in Doha we only got a bronze and if we could get a silver or anything more than last time, it would be great.'

Wilson will be taking part in four individual events and three relays in Guangzhou and relay medals will be her target when the swimming begins tomorrow at the Aoti Aquatic Centre.

'Either medal would be fine but I love competing for relay medals - it's so much more exciting and I can share the excitement with others,' she said.

Hong Kong have realistic medal hopes in the women's 4x100 metres relay, where Wilson will be joined by Stephanie Au Hoi-shun and Sze Hang-yu, with the final slot going to either Kong Man-yi or Yu Wai-ting.

'We won a bronze in the same event in Doha four years ago and there are hopes we can repeat the success,' said Hong Kong coach Chan Yiu-hoi. 'Our two other women's relay events - the 4x200 metres freestyle and the 4x100 metres medley - are also competitive and we will have to fight for a medal with South Korea. China and Japan are way above the rest in standard.'

The coach said Wilson stood to grab a medal in the 100m freestyle as well as the 100m butterfly. The last time Hong Kong won an individual medal was at the 1998 Bangkok Games when Mark Kwok finished third in the men's 400m freestyle.

China's Olympic champion Liu Zhige is not in Guangzhou, which will certainly give Wilson a better chance in the butterfly. 'She is faster than me so it's obviously to my advantage,' said Wilson. 'I have been training for the Asian Games since August after the Pan Pacific championships and a lot of hard work has been done.'