Rower Lee Ka-man confident of golden success in Incheon
With the experienceof three Asian Games behind her, 27-year-old rower seeks breakthrough
Rower Lee Ka-man believes her experience from three previous Asian Games will give her the edge as she aims for her first gold - and Hong Kong's first gold - in Incheon next month.
Having first represented Hong Kong at the Asiad in Busan in 2002, Lee, now 27, said it was high time to reap the rewards of her vast experience at the Games.
"I have made significant progress against my Asian counterparts over the last two years physically and mentally. I think I am strong enough to challenge for a gold medal now," said Lee, who missed out on a medal in Guangzhou four years ago, but took silver in Doha in 2006.
"In fact, I finished not far behind rowers from powerhouses China, who will be our major rivals in Incheon.
"With the [international] exposure I have gained over the years, I am pretty confident of delivering the goods in Incheon."
Lee may also hold an advantage as there will be 14 rowing events in Incheon but each participating team can enter a maximum of 10.
"It will be easier if I don't meet rowers from China, but this is not my biggest concern," she said.
"We have undergone the best preparation for the Incheon Games with our first-ever altitude training in Yunnan during the winter. That's why I consider a gold medal within my reach."
Lee will take part in two single sculls events in Incheon - the lightweight category and the open class. She is the reigning lightweight Asian champion.
Coach Wu Jining said Lee had improved her power in preparation for her latest Asiad outing.
"She has become more mature and with the improvement she has made, she will definitely be challenging for medals in her two events," said the coach.
Hong Kong is sending a crew of three women and seven men to take part in eight events in Incheon.
The men's lightweight squad of Chow Kwong-wing, Tang Chiu-ming, Leung Chun-shek and Kwan Ki-cheong will be another major medal hope.
"The team that will represent Hong Kong in Incheon is one of the strongest and most experienced in recent years," said head coach Chris Perry, who added a gold medal has so far eluded Hong Kong at the Asiad.