High jump star Cecilia Yeung begins long road to Asian Games at Hong Kong Athletics Championships
The 23-year-old is working her way back from a thigh injury and says it will take some time to reach the heights of 2017
High jump star Cecilia Yeung Man-wai is feeling the pressure as she prepares for her first meet of the season at this weekend’s Hong Kong Athletics Championships.
After an extraordinary 2017 when she set a Hong Kong record of 1.88 metres and clinched a silver medal at the Asian Championships, the 23-year-old sensation will be under added pressure at the event at the Wan Chai Sports Ground, which will feature all of Hong Kong’s top track and field athletes.
The two-day event will provide a glimpse of Yeung’s form with the Jakarta Asian Games less than four months away.
“I’m a bit nervous about this first race as I have not been competing for a while,” said Yeung, who has spent the last few months recuperating from a left thigh injury sustained in an Asian Games test event earlier in the year.
“I have only had four training sessions in high jump recently because of the injury as I have had to spend time on other training areas, such as fitness, conditioning and injury prevention.
“The result therefore may not be the most important as I am trying to pick up my form and get back the feeling of competition. I would not set the target too high and would be happy with over 1.8m.”
Yeung said her form should not be compared with the same period last year when she took part in three Asian Grand Prix series in a row, clearing 1.88m in the last event in Taipei.
She then competed in the Asian Championships in India where she took silver, which was followed by the World University Games and the China National Games, both of which saw her clear 1.84m.
“It was a great year for me in 2017 and of course I want to improve and do better this year but unfortunately my form has been hit by the injury. It’s now getting better but definitely I need to work hard to regain my peak,” said Yeung.
Yeung had to settle for second place in this event last year, clearing just 1.81m to fall well short of Australian Hannah Joye’s 1.87m, but there will be no overseas competitors for Yeung to deal with this time.
On the other hand, hurdler Vera Lui Lai-yiu will need to beat two strong Taiwanese rivals to win the women’s 100m hurdles, while long jumper Chan Ming-tai, who just completed a training camp with the China national team in Shenzhen, also faces two invited mainland competitors – 2015 World Championships bronze medallist Wang Jianan and 2015 Asian champion Gao Xinglong.