Hong Kong Lawn Bowls Association begins its preparation for this year’s Asian Championship by announcing a preliminary squad of eight men and eight ladies players for a selection camp in August.
The camp in August 6-10 will be held at Xinxiang (Zhengzhou) of Henan Province, China, the same venue as the 10th Asian Championship 2014. The National coaches and selectors will join the camp to pick the team for the competition.
“This is an important step in the build-up to the Asia Championship as it allows selectors to make a judgment based on the players’ actual performance at the venue. With such preparation we should be able to get good results,” said Heron Lau, the Vice-President in charge of International at HKLBA
Once the team is selected they will undergo a series of intensive training until the actual competition.
“The target is clear, we need to surpass our last performance of one gold and five bronze. This is crucial for lawn bowls to retain our Tier-B elite sport status on the Hong Kong Sports Institute funding list,” Lau explained.
While players in the squad include most of the top ranking bowlers in Hong Kong, the most obvious omission is Ken Chan, the reigning Bowler of the Year.
Lau explained: “Chan has advised us that his work commitments would not allow him to take too many holidays toward the end of the year. As he has got the World Singles Champion of Champions in November, it will be quite impossible for him to commit to another competition.
“As his position at CoC is irreplaceable and taking another long leave will jeopardise his career, we have no alternative but to accept this.”
For the ladies, the list did not have much surprise as the top five ranking players are all on the list, including this year’s Bowler of the Year Anna Chan.
The last Asian Championships was held in Malaysia and featured 11 strong bowling countries in the region, with Sri Lanka and Pakistan participated for the first time. This year the event will be organized by the Chinese Multi Bowls Association from October 9-18 in Xinxiang.
Over the years Hong Kong has accumulated 7 gold, 16 silver and 17 bronze medals at the Asian Lawn Bowls Championship. An additional 1 gold, 4 silver and 3 bronze medals were achieved by the youth players.
Claudius Lam is an Officer with the Hong Kong Lawn Bowls Association.