Hong Kong high jump star and model Cecilia Yeung eyes Asian Indoor Games birthday present

High jumper looking to use her tears from Tianjian disappointment as motivation for securing a medal when she turns 23 in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan

PUBLISHED : Friday, 15 September, 2017, 5:43pm
UPDATED : Friday, 15 September, 2017, 10:34pm

After a near miss at the National Games in Tianjin, high jumper Cecilia Yeung Man-wai is hoping to celebrate her 23rd birthday on Monday with a brightly coloured medal at the Asian Indoor Games in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan.

Yeung was in tears after missing out on the bronze medal in Tianjin on a countback of misses and will be competing in her third multi-sport games in less than a month.

“My target? I cleared 1.7 metres at last year’s Asian Indoor Championships in Doha and I don’t think there is any pressure on me this time,” said Yeung.

“The competition also coincides with my birthday and of course I hope it can bring me some good luck.”

After smashing her Hong Kong record with a height of 1.88 metres in the Asia Grand Prix series in Taipei in April, the part-time model and University of Hong Kong student has been under pressure to win more silverware on the international stage.

Despite clearing 1.84 metres in her two last major competitions – the World University Games in Taipei in August followed by the National Games in Tianjin – she was left empty-handed.

Amateur Athletic Association senior vice-chairman Simon Yeung Sai-mo said Yeung should not put herself under too much pressure.

“She should aim at qualifying for the 2020 Olympic Games – Tokyo the prime target remains,” he said.

“The Ashgabat Games are not a major event but more about preparing for next year’s Asian and World Indoor Championships. She was able to clear 1.84 metres at her last two competitions so her form is fine. We don’t have to worry too much.”

Sarah Lee Wai-sze and the cycling team who won two golds, three silvers and two bronze medals at the National Games have also gone to Ashgabat.

“We won’t be facing any competition from China, Japan and South Korea at these regional games and I hope to help the young riders achieve some good results,” said Lee, the 2012 Olympic Games bronze medallist.

Lee will be joined by Vivian Ma Wing-yu and another up-and-coming sprinter, Li Yin-yin.

Hong Kong has sent 119 athletes across 10 sports to the games, which are held every four years.