SOCCER

Mainland-bound Fong Pak-Lun leaves on a high note

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 23 February, 2014, 10:53pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 23 February, 2014, 10:55pm

Promising Fong Pak-lun received a precious farewell gift before leaving Yokohama FC for China First Division side Shenyang Zhongze this week.

The defender helped his side to a 4-1 win over BC Rangers in the RedMR First Division, his last match for the club at Tseung Kwan O Sports Ground, which was also only their second victory this season.

"I hope the club goes on to more victories in the remainder of the season," said the 21-year-old Hong Kong international. "This is a very special moment as I look forward to great challenges in the mainland. I am thankful for the support of the club and the fans over these years."

This is a very special moment as I look forward to great challenges in the mainland. I am thankful for the support of the club and the fans over these years
Fong Pak-lun

Fong earned a two-year-contract on a HK$100,000 transfer fee after catching the eye of the mainland side's officials during the East Asian Games in Tianjin last year, especially with his goal against eventual champions North Korea, which Hong Kong lost 5-2.

"China can provide a better environment for my development, in terms of organisation, scale and, of course, salary," he said. "Their standard is higher than in Hong Kong and my first target is to secure a regular place in the squad and after a couple years and with more experience, I hope can get a chance to play in the China Super League."

Fong is a full Hong Kong international and in the training squad for the Asian Cup qualifying match against Vietnam on March 5.

"I want to play for Hong Kong in that match and hopefully my new club can release me for a training camp later this month," he said.

A left back for Yokohama, Fong is likely to take up a more attacking role at his new club. "They want me to play as a left flanker because there are not too many left-footed attackers," he said. "This is a new challenge but I am full of confidence."

In another league match, at Aberdeen Sports Ground yesterday, home side Royal Southern were held to a 1-1 draw by I-Sky Yuen Long.