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Cultivating Local Talent: The Davis Cup Journey


Cultivating Local Talent: The Davis Cup Journey

Regardless of player reputation and identity, Davis Cup is the ultimate proving ground.  A cursory glance of even the greatest contemporary players shows how demanding Davis Cup – with its unique challenges – can be. Novak Djokovic , the man who has spent more time at World No. 1 (411 weeks and counting) than any other player, has occasionally endured the searing disappointment of Davis Cup defeat with a 40-8 record in rebuttals which underline the vagaries of sport.

At Victoria Park on February 3-4, Hong Kong China took another important step on its Davis Cup journey with a 3-1 victory over Zimbabwe – a proud tennis nation which has been to the pinnacle of the Davis Cup, having famously toppled a powerful Australian team to reach the World Group quarter-finals in 1998.  Against such determined opposition, victory was never guaranteed but Coleman Wong, Jack Wong, Kevin Wong, Dasson Chan and Roger Ng not only delivered a vital win in the Davis Cup Group II, first round play-off but they all gained important experience and exposure.

While Coleman showcased his undeniable class with a 6-2, 6-0 win over Courtney Lock in the second singles rubber on the opening day, the effort of Jack to recover from 2-4 down in the deciding set to defeat Zimbabwean spearhead Ben Lock set the tone in the opening match of the tie and gave Hong Kong China impetus which continued to build.

Resilience and character are integral to success in life and Jack displayed plenty of both when the match was on the line. With much hanging on the doubles rubber, Coleman and Kevin showed their tenacity in front of a passionate crowd, who clearly appreciated the efforts of our players.

With victory in the tie assured, Captain Yu Hiu Tung cast an eye to the future by debuting Dasson Chan in the fourth dead rubber and giving the 18-year-old priceless experience. Even though Dasson lost in a tight three-setter to Benedict Badza, the foundations are being laid.  

One of the valuable aspects of the preparation was the involvement of our feeder and development squads in the build-up to the tie. The opportunity for our youngsters to spend time with elite players is precious because our developing athletes look up to their heroes and want to emulate them, which then fosters ambition and ultimately builds team work and fraternity. Ultimately, this leads to building a proud tradition. 

Hong Kong China can feel proud of the way its team performed before, during and after the tie with the quality of its play and its overall sportsmanship. It was clear from the passion and engagement of our team, the coaches and support staff that they had embraced the proud traditions of Davis Cup and the responsibility of representing Hong Kong China.  In doing so, it has helped play an important role in the building of Davis Cup tradition and community spirit in Hong Kong. To that end, we were delighted with the support of the tennis community who showed how much the Team Hong Kong, China means to the city and we wish our team all the best for the upcoming home tie playing against Ecuador in September. 

Stay tuned for more from Team Hong Kong, China.

Michael Cheng, President
Hong Kong, China Tennis Association