The Influence of Sports on a Lawyer’s Life: An Interview with Award-Winning Sportsman Lawyers

In recognition and appreciation of those members under the Law Society’s Recreation and Sports Programme who have actively taken part in activities organised by the Recreation and Sports Committee (“RSC”) and sweat for the pride of the Law Society, as well as promoting good sportsmanship, each year, the RSC will invite nominations and applications from members for the Outstanding Performance Award (the “Award”).

There were two awardees in 2017-2018 namely Mr. Allen Che and Mr. Calvin Cheng. The two outstanding sportsman lawyers have both made marvellous achievements in different areas of recreation and sports in the past year. Calvin has shared with us in the last issue of the RSC Feature how he has benefited from his participation in different recreational and sporting activities including badminton, dragon boating and ultimate Frisbee. In this issue, we will learn from Allen, or better known as “King of Breaststroke” by his friends in the Swimming Team, his secrets to success and achieving work-life balance.

When you have missed the boat...

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When and why did you start playing sports/engaging in recreational activities?

I did not join any team training during primary and secondary school. I only started my swimming training during my years at law school.

What made you join the Recreation and Sports Programme?

When I first joined the profession in 1991, competition was equally fierce but relationship between fellow members were fraternal. My experience during my time as a freshman of Ricci Hall, the University dormitory, reminded me that sports is highly conducive for fellowship spirit to be built up. I believed that this was also the mission of the Law Society’s Recreation and Sports Programme.

What sports/recreational activities are you/have been involved in?

I am a member of the Hiking Team and Swimming Team and thus my nickname Frogman (trying to be an amphibian).

How often do you play sports/engage in recreational activities?

Too little. More training is always desperately warranted.

Do you think sports and recreation help you at work? Can you share your secrets for achieving work-life balance?

When you seriously believe you may die while swimming across the Channel, you will not care too much about the harsh words from the bench or client’s billing.

How would you describe your relationship with other team/group members?

They are buddies that always plan for the most difficult and ambitious routes for you, while at the same time, the only ones to save you when you are suffering heatstroke in the mountain.

Our annual reunion at the Oxfam Trailwalker.

How do you see the role of the coach in a sports team/recreational group?

They are demons luring you away from work.

Would you recommend the Recreation and Sports Programme to your friends in the profession?

Yes, if you want to be distracted from your successful practice.

Can you share your feelings towards being awarded?

Embarrassed.

Run until you sprain your leg.

How would you define sportsmanship?

Being defeated continuously.

Is there any memorable sporting moment of yourself?

When my kids agree that you do not always win no matter how hard you train.

Anything you wish to share with your learned friends about recreation and sports/work-life balance?

Work stress can kill and so are the beautiful mountain and the sparkling blue sea of Hong Kong. Pick where you want to "rest in peace".

Remarks: The Recreation and Sports Programme (the “Programme”) is an annual programme under the Recreation and Sports Committee (“RSC”). It aims at encouraging members to lead a balanced life within demanding work routines and to network with their fellow members and other professional bodies by taking part in various recreational and sporting activities.

Swimming back from Hainan with our Honorary Swimming Captain at 2018 Rule of Law Swimming Marathon.

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