Hong Kong’s women left China trailing in their wake on the final night of the short course swimming at the Asian Indoor Games in Turkmenistan on Monday night, but victory in the 4x100 metres medley relay was tinged with the disappointment of narrowly missing out on a new Games record.
The Hong Kong foursome thrashed the Chinese by 6.14 seconds with a time of 3 minutes 58.32 seconds, just 0.01 seconds outside the Games record set by China in Incheon four years ago.
“The team is very happy to have signed off the competition with a gold medal,” said Sze Hang-yu, who won silver in the 100 metres freestyle earlier in the evening.
“But at the same time, we missed the Games record by one hundredth of a second. That rankles a bit.
“But overall, our performance was fantastic and all credit to the young team for putting up such a brilliant show.”
The gold medal was Hong Kong’s fourth of the event, which ensured the team finished third in the medal table for swimming, behind China and South Korea.
“We’re surprised that we won by so many seconds,” said Rainbow Ip, who swam the breaststroke leg. “Right before the race I had just finished my individual race, in the 50 breaststroke, but actually we have just broken the Hong Kong record.
“I wouldn’t say we expected to win, but we had the goal to win the gold medal. It’s been an honour to be part of this team. I’m the youngest in the team and I before the race I was feeling a bit stressed, but they encouraged me and this mixture of seniors and juniors has been really good.”
Yvette Kong Man-yi claimed the bronze medal in the women’s 50 metres breaststroke while Raymond Mak Ho-lun became the first male swimmer to claim a medal when he finished third in the 100 metres individual medley.
“I would love to win, but I’m OK with the bronze medal,’ said Mak. “When you take bronze, you always wish you had done better, but I am happy for what I did here. I tried to swim the best I can and I am not ungrateful.”
Elsewhere, Liu Kai-sum and Liu Wan-hin paired up to win silver in both the tango and the waltz in the dance sport, and Ng Sum-chun and Lam Wai-yin finished second in the salsa.
In tennis, Wong Chun-hun and Wong Hong-kit lost 6-4, 3-6, 6-1 to India’s Vijay Natarajan and Jagadeesan Vishnuvardan in the men’s doubles semis to take a share of the bronze medal.
With two days remaining, Hong Kong remain in ninth place in the medals table with 10 golds, nine silver and 14 bronze.