THE Hong Kong Professional Teachers' Union has backed 185 district board candidates, including one standing against a United Democrat. The chairman of the union is Cheung Man-kwong, a core member of the United Democrats of Hong Kong. The UDHK and Meeting Point have jointly fielded 132 candidates. The union's secretary-general, Chan Hung, said all the 185 candidates were allowed to state in their campaign material they were supported by Mr Cheung and the union. He said that among the 185 candidates, only one would clash with a United Democrat. She was Tong Po-chun who stood in Saddle Ridge, Sha Tin. Her competitor was Wong Shu-qun. Mr Chan said Ms Tong sought the union's support first and it could not be withdrawn simply because Mr Wong later joined the fray. He said they had agreed with the United Democrats that Mr Cheung's name would only appear on the election materials of candidates supported by the union. Mr Cheung last night said this showed the union was independent and not a subsidiary of the UDHK. He said the United Democrats understood he had to put the union's interest first because he was teachers' Legco representative. This was one of the rare occasions when the interests of the union and UDHK did not match. Mr Chan said the candidates came from different parties of the liberal camp as well as independents. The union's endorsement was given on a first-come-first-served basis. In the last election, the union only endorsed about 40 candidates. Mr Chan said the sharp jump was probably due to the increase in the number of candidates and that they had placed a newspaper advertisement asking those interested in getting the union's backing to apply. But he noted nobody from the Liberal Party, the pro-China Democratic Alliance for the Betterment of Hong Kong and the Liberal Democratic Federation had sought their support. In a separate development, two more district board candidates were disqualified yesterday, bringing the total to 10. The nominations of Tsang Wing-hong of Hoi Tsui and Law Yiu-kuen of Shek Lei, both in Kwai Tsing district, were thrown out because their cheques for the $3,000 election deposit bounced. The pair were among the 71 candidates who registered on the last day of the nomination period. They could not be reached for comment yesterday. One of the 10 disqualified candidates, Bruce Liu Sing-lee, said he would tomorrow apply for leave for a judicial review. Mr Liu's nomination was ruled invalid because eight of his 15 nominators were rejected as they had sponsored another candidate, Yeung Man-wai.