AN emergency trans-Pacific arms shipment has been initiated by the Hong Kong camp in a bid to save shooter Gilbert U King-hung from pulling out of the centre-fire pistol event at the Commonwealth Games in Victoria, Canada. The 49-year-old veteran was fuming yesterday (Sunday Canada time) after discovering that his centre-fire pistol had been damaged through metal fatigue. Panic set into the Hong Kong camp with U scouring Victoria for a gunsmith and orders being sent back to the territory to find a replacement for the five-year-old, HK$10,000 gun. U was clearly affected during yesterday's Badge competition for the free pistol - a traditional pre-Games event which provides shooters with an important final tune-up before the start of competition proper. ''I was really pissed off. I was running around like a chicken without a head,'' said U, who was nevertheless happy with his 60-shot score of 532 at the scenic Heals Rifle Range. ''I wanted to buy a new gun, but apparently there is nowhere in Canada where they sell them because the weapon is not that popular here. ''I eventually found a local gunsmith. We had a look at it and decided on the best way to fix it, but we are not sure [if it will as good as it was].'' U, a former Commonwealth Games bronze medallist, stressed that even if the gun was to be repaired, it would not be in perfect condition. ''I will know in the next couple of days whether the gunsmith can fix it,'' U said. ''But it will not be the same. I may have to pull out of the centre-fire event.'' The centre-fire event is scheduled for August 21. Pang Chung, the Hong Kong team's chef de mission, is hoping that red tape can be avoided in bringing a new gun from the territory. ''We are looking at bringing one in by courier as soon as possible,'' Pang said. ''But it is not going to be easy. ''It is, after all, a weapon and you can't just bring one in like that. There may be a lot of red tape.'' U's absence from the centre-fire event would reduce Hong Kong's potential medal count by two as he was to partner Li Hao-jian in the men's pairs event. Both shooters own only one gun each. The one bright spot for U is that he feels in good form, despite his relatively low score in the badge competition. Hong Kong are represented by seven shooters in the Commonwealth Games, including for the first time, a woman, Yu Lai-har. She will be competing in the individual sport pistol and the individual air pistol events. The squad also comprises Cheng Shu, Wyman Li, Peter Rull and Paul Simpson. Cheng and Wyman Li, from the Hong Kong Clay Target Shooting Association, are taking part in the trap events. Rull and Simpson will partner each other in the pairs small-bore rifle prone while Rull is also competing in the individual full-bore rifle competition. For Li Hao, it will be his first major international competition for Hong Kong since arriving in the territory seven years ago from Guangdong. The 39-year-old, who has previously represented Guangdong at the China Games, only recently took up shooting again after a stint as a coach. He takes part in the individual rapid fire pistol and air pistol events and will also partner U in the air pistol pairs.