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ZESPRI® Outstanding Junior Athletes Taste a 7-day Fruitful New Zealand Tour

28 April 2011

Four recipients of the 2010 ZESPRI® Outstanding Junior Athlete Awards, including (in red jersey, from left) Man Ka-kei (windsurfing), Wong Chun-wai (wushu), Chiu Chung-hei (table tennis) and Mok Uen-ying (wushu), join the Bethlehem College’s rugby players for an aerobic fitness training session during the tour. Read More

The four athletes visit a ZESPRI® kiwifruit packhouse to understand how to select the best quality fruit. Read More

The athletes experience a variety of farm activities, including a sheep shearing demonstration. Read More

A visit to a local aquarium. Read More

Sponsored by ZESPRI®, the world’s largest exporter of a premium brand of New Zealand kiwifruit, four recipients of the 2010 ZESPRI® Outstanding Junior Athlete Awards including table tennis player Chiu Chung-hei, windsurfing athlete Man Ka-kei and wushu athletes Mok Uen-ying and Wong Chun-wai experienced a wonderful cultural exchange tour to New Zealand between 2 and 8 April.

During the seven-day, six-night tour, the young athletes paid visits to a school and a sports institute including the Bethlehem College where they participated in training session with local rugby athletes. During the visit, table tennis player Chiu also enjoyed a fun time with local athletes when playing table tennis with them while wushu athletes Mok and Wong’s demonstration won a big applause from all attendees. They then visited the Millennium Institute of Sport & Health and shared with coaches and athletes their thoughts and experiences in sport.

Chiu Chung-hei, who is now preparing for the Asian Junior Championships held in July, said the most unforgettable experience was to meet with local athletes, train and play table tennis with them. “The tour provides me an opportunity to understand the training situation of New Zealand athletes whose dedication to sport and endurance are worth for us to learn. Meanwhile, I am slightly surprised of their table tennis skill which is quite good and I hope to play with them again in the future,” he said.

In addition, the up-and-coming athletes were able to visit a kiwifruit orchard as well as the ZESPRI® kiwifruit packhouse and a kiwi conservation centre. Some interesting activities were also arranged including the farm activities, helicopter ride, pure cruise and visit of local Maori.

Wong Chun-wai, a first-time visitor to New Zealand, showed great interest on the cultivation process of kiwifruit and took photos everywhere. “I like kiwifruit very much for its good taste and nutrition value. Thanks ZESPRI® for organising this tour which enables us to witness the whole transportation process of kiwifruit from farm to factory.  It really widens our horizons, ” he said.

15-year-old Mok Uen-ying, the youngest athletes of the tour group, echoed Wong’s value, “New Zealand is such a beautiful place that I wish to stay longer. It is also very interesting to learn about Maori culture and kiwi.”

Man Ka-kei who always undergoes training on the sea, said, “This air-land-cruise tour brings me fond memories. The most impressive thing to me was the close encounter with sheep. Exchange with local athletes was also a valuable chance for me. Special thanks to all organisations and people who work so hard in the past few months for making this tour true in my life.”

The ZESPRI® Outstanding Junior Athlete Awards are organised by the HKSI and sponsored by ZESPRI®, with support from the Sports Federation & Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, China and the Hong Kong Sports Press Association.  They recognise the achievements of outstanding local junior athletes under the age of 19 on a quarterly basis. The New Zealand cultural exchange tour has been organised for the second consecutive year, the participants of 2009 tour were table tennis players Lee Ho-ching and Ng Wing-nam, swimmer Kong Man-yi and wushu athlete Fung Wing-see.