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Friday, Sep 24, 2021

Boccia players turn on style

Hong Kong boccia players Leung Yuk-wing and Vivian Lau Wai-yan are in today's quarterfinals in the class BC4 individual events in the Tokyo Paralympics.
Leung, 36, the defending champion, got there after winning two of three group matches. His only loss was to 44-year-old Brazilian Eliseu dos Santos.

Leung, in his fifth Paralympics, established a four-point lead in the first two ends, but dos Santos made a successful comeback in the final two ends to win 6-4 against the opponent who thrashed his elder brother, Marcelo, 48, by 14-0 in a group match.

Leung also defeated Sergey Safin of the Russian Paralympic Committee 3-1.

Having bagged three gold medals in past Paralympics, Leung will be playing 26-year-old Michaela Balcova from Slovakia, a gold medalist in the pairs in the 2016 Rio Paralympics, in the quarterfinals.

His partner in the pairs later, 42-year-old Lau, was in top form after beating world No 1 Alison Levine from Canada 3-2 in her second of three group matches.

In her fourth appearance in the Paralympics in Tokyo, Lau will today be playing 24-year-old Samuel Andrejcik from Slovakia, who took the gold in the pairs event and a silver medal after losing to Leung in the 2016 Rio Paralympics.

However, teammate Wong Kwan-hang was unable to make the quarterfinals despite winning his final group stage match 5-3 against Japan's Shun Esaki.

In another class, Yeung Hiu-lam advanced to the quarterfinals after winning all three matches in the group stage of the BC2 individual event.

She won final group stage match over Portuguese Abilio Valente 4-3 and today faces Maciel Santos of Brazil, a gold medalist in London 2012, for a place in the semifinals.

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