Juanita Mok wins wushu bronze as Hong Kong set record with four WUG medals
Wushu success brings new medal haul for Hong Kong at World University Games
Two weeks ago, wushu exponent Juanita Mok Uen-ying was on the verge of pulling out of the World University Games because of a fever. However, she decided to persevere and her determination was on Monday rewarded with a bronze medal that helped Hong Kong break their medal record at the student games in Taiwan.
Mok finished third in the women’s taolu for two-events combined, adding to Hong Kong’s bronze in men’s doubles tennis and the two golds won by swimmer Siobhan Haughey.
“I once considered withdrawing from the competition because I had lost weight due to a fever and I could not train,” said the Beijing Sports University student.
“But thanks to my parents as they kept encouraging me, I changed my mind and resumed training despite my weak body condition.
“After all, we knew there would possibly be no such opportunity again and I am so happy the hard work paid off.”
Wushu was introduced to the University Games at the behest of hosts Taiwan but is unlikely to be on the programme for the next edition in Naples, Italy in 2019.
Hong Kong’s previous best medal showing was at the Shenzhen Games in 2011 with three bronze medals.
The 22-year-old Mok was second after the opening taijiquan event with a score of 9.59 but dropped a place after the second event, the taijijian, in which she managed to score 9.51.
Wu Mengyao, of China, won the event with a combined score of 9.6 and 9.62, while the silver medal was taken by Chen Yi-ying, of Taiwan (9.53 and 9.6).
“I felt a bit tired in the second event and failed to maintain my momentum, perhaps it was because of the sickness but still it is not a bad result,” said Mok.
Hong Kong were hoping for more medals in athletics but the two field athletes were unable to deliver.
High jumper Cecilia Yeung Man-wai cleared 1.84 metres but it was only good enough to finish eighth among 12 finalists at Taipie Stadium.
The University of Hong Kong student cleared 1.88 metres at the same venue when she won the Asia grand prix series four months ago. But even that would not have been good enough for a medal with Oksana Okunieva, of Ukraine, winning gold with 1.97 metres while the silver and bronze medallists both jumped 1.91 metres.
But Yeung was not too disappointed, saying she had improved her skills in her quest to beat 1.88m and boost her confident ahead of the National Games in Tianjin next week.
In the men’s long jump, Chan Ming-tai, who finished with a silver medal in 8.03 metres at last month’s Asian Championships, only managed 7.44 metres to finish 11th out of 12 finalists.