HK fencer Edgar Cheung stops school to work as full-time athleteLocal | 26 Jul 2021 11:35 pm
Hong Kong fencer Edgar Cheung Ka-long, who brought home the second Olympic gold medal after beating Italy’s Daniele Garozzo in the Olympic men’s individual fencing today, quit school in secondary four to work as a professional athlete.
But the first love of the 24-year-old, who stands at 193 centimeters tall, was actually basketball due to the influence of his parents - who were once first division basketball players for Hong Kong.
During the summer of secondary three, Cheung’s father enrolled him into a fencing class instead after his school suspended training for its basketball team.
Cheung subsequently stopped school after secondary four, devoting his time to fencing and is currently ranked 19th in the world.
In 2014, he won four gold medals in different sections of the Asian Junior and Cadet Fencing Championships in Jordan.
In the same year, Cheung won a bronze medal in the men’s team foil in fencing at the Incheon Asian Games.
In 2015, he won another bronze medal in the men’s individual foil in fencing at the Singapore Asian Fencing Championships.
Next year, Cheung came back strongly, receiving a gold medal in the men’s individual foil fencing at the Wuxi Asian Fencing Championships.
In the same year, he obtained his qualification for the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, but lost to Brazil’s Guilherme Toldo in the round of 16.
In 2017, Cheung charged ahead with another gold medal in men’s individual foil in fencing at the Junior and Cadet World Fencing Championships in Bulgaria.
He then secured a silver medal and bronze medal in men’s individual and team foil in fencing respectively at the Hong Kong Asian Fencing Championships in the same year.
In 2018, he also won a bronze medal in the men’s individual foil in fencing at the Jakarta Palembang Asian Games.
And in 2019, he won a silver medal at the Italy FIE Grand Prix.
Being in top form on his road of fencing, Cheung said he hoped to strive for better results in both men’s individual and team foil in fencing.
“My mental state this time is different from that in the 2016 Olympics, as I was relatively young at the time,” he said.
“On individual foil, I think trying my best will be enough and I hope not to pressurize myself too much.”