Junior star captures squash title

BUDDING junior squash star Wong Wai-chung kept Hong Kong's colours flying in Australia by capturing the under-19 title in the Gladstone Park tournament following an extremely hectic three-day programme.

Wai-chung is on a two-week training stint at the Victoria Institute of Sports as his prize for winning the Philip Lee Memorial Award, which honours the territory's most promising junior squash player.

The 15-year-old played five matches on the first day of the tournament - beating Kennedy Ashley, Ray Manda and Paul Lughini in the under-17 age division and stopping Mark Price and Cameron Perry in the under-19 category.

He went on to reach both finals with victories over Joch Evans and Ben Gould respectively on the second day.

Wai-chung's first final was the under-17 in which he played Cameron again, and this time the Victorian number one junior turned the tables on him with a 6-9, 9-2, 9-1, 9-3 triumph.

However, the St Joseph's College pupil made amends by stopping David Talazolo 9-2, 1-9, 5-9, 9-6, 9-6 for the under-19 crown.

Coach Allen Ngan Wai-ming said: ''Wai-chung played very well throughout the tournament but the hectic schedule took its toll.

''He played nine matches in three days and he was mentally just not up to it for the under-17 final. He never recovered after losing his concentration in the second game.'' Meanwhile, Cheung Cheuk-yin and Christina Mak lived up to their top billing by winning the first leg of the Dunlop Junior Grand Prix at the Hong Kong Squash Centre.

La Salle College's Cheuk-yin had a first round bye and breezed past Liu Chi-fai and Alex Tancock in his two matches leading up to the final against 18-year-old Wong Kin.

Cheuk-yin was given a scare when Kin clawed back from two games down to push the title decider the full distance but the 16-year-old top seed eventually prevailed 9-3, 9-2, 3-9, 4-9, 9-6 In the girls' division, Tak Nga Secondary School's Christina demolished all opposition in winning her maiden title - scoring straight games triumphs over Pamela Lee, Dodo Kwong and Tsang O-ling.