Hong Kong's first official inline hockey team will take on regional rivals at the 11th Asian Roller Sports Championships in Jeonju, South Korea, next week. A Hong Kong men's team, including schoolboy Yannick Wong, will face Japan, South Korea, China, Macau and Chinese Taipei in the biennial competition from May 10 to 15. The SAR is for the first time sending a squad of 11 inline hockey players, as well as four speed skaters, to the western Korean city. The main focus is on speed and artistic skating, with Bangladesh, Iran, India, Indonesia, Pakistan and Mongolia also taking part in the event. The inline hockey team is confident of winning a medal and sees the championships as a milestone for the sport here. 'This is very important for the development of inline hockey in Hong Kong,' said team captain Ashley Chow. 'It's the first time we have competed at an overseas event as an official national team. So this is very exciting. I think we can win a medal. Japan and South Korea will be the strongest teams, but we have beaten Chinese Taipei before,' Chow said. Yannick, 15, from King George V School, is the youngest member of the team. He already has experience playing against top regional sides after representing the local side, Team Phoenix, at last year's YMCA Hong Kong Inline Cup. The players got the chance to compete as a national team thanks to a new partnership between The Hong Kong Federation of Roller Sports and the Hong Kong, China Inline Hockey Association (HKCIHA). Inline hockey is becoming increasingly popular in the region and will make its debut at the 2007 Indoor Asian Games in Macau. HKCIHA Development Officer Doug Cole said taking part in the Asian championships was vital to help make Hong Kong competitive at international level. 'This means our best inline hockey players can compete together for Hong Kong.' 'We had a selection committee who invited all the top inline players to a trial. The squad was selected over a number weeks.' The four Hong Kong speed skaters include three students. They are Steven Chan Wing-ho, 18, and two girls - Choi Wing-yee, 15, and Angelina Stephanie Wong, 17.