Olympic fencing champ says Hong Kong 'insane' after first gold for 25 years

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Cheung Ka Long I Photo: AFP

Tokyo: Fencing gold medallist Edgar Cheung Ka-long said Hong Kong had gone "insane" after he won the Chinese territory's first Olympic gold in 25 years and only its second ever.

The 24-year-old stunned Italy's reigning Olympic champion Daniele Garozzo 15-11 in the final of the men's foil at the pandemic-delayed Tokyo Games.

Hong Kong's only previous Olympic gold came at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, when Lee Lai-shan won a gold medal in windsurfing.

Cheung might have appeared calm in victory but he said he was anything but.

"To be honest, I'm not that calm, I don't know what I can do," he said after claiming gold on Monday.

"It's like a dream -- that's why everyone thinks I'm calm, but I didn't know what happened."

Aside from the two gold medals, Hong Kong's only other previous Olympic medals were silver in 2004 at Athens in table tennis and a bronze in cycling at London 2012.

"The reaction in Hong Kong has been insane," said Cheung, who is reportedly in line to pocket five million Hong Kong dollars ($600,000) from the city's government as a reward.

"Because in total medals in Hong Kong, we only have three. Now we have four because we haven't had a gold medal since 1996 so it means a lot to show to the world we can do it," Cheung added.

"We are not only a city. We can fight for victory."


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