Hong Kong may be small but we’ve always punched above our weight. And whether they’re Olympic medallists, young-up-and-comers or inspirational mavericks, Hong Kong is home to some pretty awesome sporting icons.
1. Tiffany Chan
Amateur golfer-turned-sporting champion Tiffany Chan is the first player from Hong Kong to win a professional women’s ranking tournament. She also recently secured her spot in the 2016 Rio Olympics, where we hope the 21-year-old continues to set new standards.
2. Marco Fu
Professional snooker player Marco Fu famously beat superstar snooker champ Ronnie O’Sullivan to win the 2007 World Open. Last year he reached the semi-finals of the World Championship – 10 years after he first made it that far – proving he’s still got what it takes at the highest level.
3. Ko Lai-chak
Together with Li Ching, Ko Lai-chak bagged Hong Kong’s first-ever silver medal when the pair finished second in the table tennis doubles in Athens in 2004. But Ko has also had his share of solo success. At the 2006 Asian Games – along with a gold meal earned with Li in the doubles – he also won a bronze in the men’s singles tournament.
4. Mui Thomas
A true inspiration and sporting icon. Thomas was born with the rare skin condition harlequin ichthyosis but has overcome adversity to become a special needs teacher at Wan Chai’s Rock Foundation and a referee for the Hong Kong Rugby Union. With aspirations of becoming a referee for major international rugby matches, the 22-year-old has also been nominated for the Spirit of Hong Kong Awards for her many outstanding achievements.
5. Lee Wai-sze
A professional track cyclist, Lee represented Hong Kong at the last Olympics in London and walked away with the bronze medal in the women’s keirin, winning Hong Kong’s first Olympic medal in cycling. She didn’t stop there, though. In 2013, Lee secured gold in the 500m time-trial at the UCI Track Cycling World Championships in Minsk, Belarus.
6. Lee Lai-shan
Hong Kong’s solid gold Olympian is the affectionately nicknamed Shan Shan. She scored a gold medal for boardsailing during the 1996 Atlanta Olympics and went on to win numerous competitions in the years that followed, including the World Championships in 1997. That same year Shan Shan was appointed a Member of the Order of the British Empire.
7. Doo Hoi-kem
Teen table tennis prodigy Doo (pictured above) shot to fame winning the 2008 World Cup and at the 2012 Summer Youth Olympics won a further two medals. Shortly to follow was her 2013 World Championship triumph. Sadly, Li Xiaoxia of China dashed Doo’s hopes of qualifying for Rio with a 4-1 defeat in the semi-final of the Olympic qualifiers.
8. Ng On-yee
Hong Kong’s top female snooker player not only bagged the gold medal at the 2010 Asian Games but also went on to win the ISBF World Snooker Championship for amateur players that same year. Double whammy. In fact, her success earned her an invitation from the World Snooker body to play against the game’s top male players. Girl power!
9. Rex Tso
Dubbed the ‘Wonder Kid’, Hong Kong’s very own Rocky Balboa is an undefeated champion in the Asia Pacific region. The flyweight powerhouse recently secured his 19th victory, against veteran South Korean boxer Young Gil-bae, which saw him add the WBO Asia Pacific title to his WBC Asian Boxing Council championship.
10. Hong Kong national team fans
Fifa fined the Hong Kong Football Association after Hong Kong fans booed the Chinese national anthem at a qualifying match last year. The fans, dry-witted and standing up for their SAR, responded by returning with cards and banners reading ‘Boo’. If that’s not a silent protest, we don’t know what is.