2018 in review: what were the top 10 Hong Kong sporting controversies of the year?
- Rex Tso, Sarah Lee and Tiffany Chan among the most controversial stories in Hong Kong sport
10. Hong Kong fencer Nicholas Choi retires: Olympian reveals on social media he is calling it quits at 25
10 Top Hong Kong fencer Nicholas Choi suddenly called it a day after a successful Asian Games campaign. Choi, who qualified for the 2012 Olympic Games, finished with a silver in both the individual and team foil events in Indonesia, securing the best result for a Hong Kong fencer at the Asiad. At 25, Choi is now reported to be eyeing a career in showbiz.
9. ‘I was a little nervous but I didn’t realise’: Hong Kong’s Tiffany Chan makes the cut in promising LPGA Tour debut
9 Tiffany Chan Tsz-ching became the first player from Hong Kong to star on the LPGA tour. This came after a rookie year on the 2017 Symetra Tour, where she recorded four top-10 finishes and finished 24th on the season money list.
8 Asian Games medal winners were offered double incentives with an individual gold medal prize worth HK$800,000 and HK$1.6 million for team events through a dollar-for-dollar financial support from a commercial sponsor scheme. A staggering HK$26 million in cash rewards was handed out to the medal winners.
7. Hong Kong football would be a ‘world laughing stock’ if referee had his way, says Eastern coach Chan Yuen-ting
7 Referee Tong Kui-sum asked Eastern to concede a compensatory goal after admitting he had made a mistake to allow Chan Yuen-ting’s side to score an equaliser against Wofoo Tai Po in a Sapling Cup group match. Eastern coach Chan refused his request saying it risked turning the league into a laughing stock on the world stage.
6 Ng On-yee surged to the world number one ranking in women’s snooker, breaking the long-time domination of England’s Reanne Evans. Ng became the first player from Asia to reach the top of snooker’s rankings.
5 Sarah Lee Wai-sze came out of semi-retirement to set her sights on the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. The 31-year-old was rumoured to have quit the sport after the 2017 World Championships in Hong Kong but finally decided to have a tilt at the 2020 Games to contend for a second medal after her 2012 London Games bronze.
4. Hong Kong strike gold with best Asian Games medal haul to outshine Singapore in Jakarta and Palembang
4 The Hong Kong delegation returned with eight gold medals from the Asian Games in Indonesia, equalling the record they achieved at the 2010 Games in Guangzhou. Cyclist Sarah Lee Wai-sze captured two gold medals in the women’s sprint and keirin events, making her Hong Kong’s most decorated Asian Games gold medallist with a total five.
3. My goal is to compete in the Tokyo Olympics, says Hong Kong boxing star Rex Tso after less than impressive comeback
3 Sarah Lee wasn’t the only Hong Kong sportsperson to set their sights on Tokyo. Boxer Rex Tso Sing-yu ended his professional fight career after 22 wins without defeat in 2018. Tso, who had his first bout in 13 months in an exhibition match against Taiwan’s Chiang Yi-Hung, said he would now try to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics under the Hong Kong Boxing Association.
2. Gary White quits Hong Kong: new coach leaves post to join Japanese J. League club Tokyo Verdy after just three months in role
2 Newly recruited national soccer team coach Gary White left after just three months in charge with the success of taking Hong Kong to the EAFF Championship final still stark in his memory. His appointment led to the resignation of HKFA board member Canny Leung Chi-shan who lashed out on the recruitment process. White joined J2-League side Tokyo Verdy.
1. Hong Kong hurdler Vera Lui considers legal action against online attacks following her disclosure of sexual assault
1 The “#MeToo” movement reached Hong Kong sport in 2018 when hurdler Vera Lui Lai-yiu accused her former coach of sexual assault. The accused was acquitted after a court hearing, but then Lui revealed she had been under constant attack online since her revelation and was considering legal action.