Thai boccia athletes land Tokyo 2020 spots11.07.2019
Hong Kong athletes also shine at Asia-Oceania
The Boccia Asia-Oceania Regional Championships wrapped up Wednesday (July 10) after several days of exciting competition in Seoul, South Korea, with the top-ranked athlete from each event and top teams obtaining a slot for their nation at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics
Thailand’s depth in boccia was on full display with a dominant performance in the BC1/BC2 team event. Thailand overpowered South Korea 12-1 with a team made up of Witsanu Huadpradit, Natthawut Deemak, Subin Tipmanee, Worawut Saengampa, and Watcharaphon Vongsa. The gold medal earns Thailand a coveted spot at next year’s Paralympics.
Earlier in the competition, there was excitement for the hometown fans in the final of the BC1 category with Youngjin Roh defeating his countryman Sungjoon Jung 7-2 to give South Korea a place in Tokyo.
Thailand celebrated another Paralympic spot in the BC2 category as Worawut Saengampa jumped out to an early lead and held on to win gold with a 5-3 win over Japan’s Hidetaka Sugimura.
Hong Kong earned four spots of their own in Tokyo thanks to a solid performance from Yuen Kei Ho in the BC3 final, defeating Junyup Kim of South Korea 7-3. Yuen Kei Ho has been among the best in this event for the past couple of years and will likely be one of the athletes to watch in Tokyo.
Meanwhile, Yuk Wing Leung kept the cheering going for Hong Kong defeating China’s Ximei Lin 6-3 to capture gold in the BC4 category.
The celebrations continued for Hong Kong until the very last day of competition on Wednesday. Hong Kong’s Yuen Kei Ho, Wing Tung Liu and Tak Wah Tse defeated Japan 5-2 to take gold and a place in Tokyo in the BC3 pairs event.
Things were a lot closer for Hong Kong’s Yuk Wing Leung, Kwan Hang Wong, and Wai Yan Vivian Lau who needed a tie-break to claim gold in the BC4 pairs final against Thailand. The game was tied 3-3 after regulation but Hong Kong found the shot they needed when it counted.
Complete results from the 2019 Boccia Asia-Oceania Regional Championships are available on BISFed’s website.