Never Give Up, Says Award-Winning Sportsman Lawyers

Each year, the Recreation and Sports Committee (“RSC”) invites nominations and applications from members for the Outstanding Performance Award (the “Award”) to commend those members under the Law Society’s Recreation and Sports Programme (the “Programme”) who have remarkable achievements in different areas of recreation and sports.

The awardees of 2018-2019 were Mr. Hayson Yuen, Mr. Lit Tat Sing and Mr. Rodney Teoh. In this issue of the Recreation and Sports Feature, the three gentlemen share with us how sports impact their lives, and the role of the Programme in their athletic journeys.

H: Mr. Hayson YUEN

L: Mr. LIT Tat Sing

R: Mr. Rodney TEOH

1. When and why did you start playing sports/engaging in recreational activities? What made you join the Recreation and Sports Programme?

H: I went swimming and cycling for leisure when I was in primary school but the first team I joined during my traineeship under the Programme was the Dragon Boat Team. It was not until 2012 when the Cycling Team, of which I am currently serving as Captain, was set up.

The Programme has allowed me to connect with other members of the profession in a relaxed atmosphere.

L: When I was about 10, I saw my classmates having great fun playing table tennis during recess. Then I started to join them out of curiosity.

I hope to keep my hobby and exercising after I entered the profession so I joined the Programme.

R: I have played volleyball since secondary school. Since then, I could not stay away from the volleyball court. When the Law Society decided to set up the volleyball team more than ten years ago, I immediately signed up, and the rest is history.

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

H: I go swimming at least once a week. If time permits, I hope to resume a more frequent and regular training on cycling too.

L: At least twice a week. I have regular table tennis practice with other exercises such as swimming, running and hiking.

R: It is a luxury to play volleyball once or twice per week knowing how hard it is to book a court. I manage to become a regular gym-goer though.

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

H: Evaporation of sweat from the skin does not only cool down my body but also refreshes my mind from stress at work. It has therefore become my habit to visit the gym at least twice a week during lunch break or after work since I was a trainee solicitor.

L: Yes. Work is part of life, and life is about give and take. I certainly take a lot from sports. I listen to my body signals and emotions to see what to give and take for the balance of life.

R: Sports definitely help you get in shape, which in a way boost your endurance when burning the midnight oil! It also makes you consider more about how to practise in a more teamwork-orientated setting.

I interpret achieving work-life balance as achieving more with less, which means effective time management and defining responsibilities clearly. I think my colleagues and my family all did a very good job in this aspect.

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

H: They are brothers and sisters who are all dedicated to sports and competitions. I always feel grateful to be a part of them.

L: We practise, pair up and fight in a number of matches. We share the same goal – how to play better table tennis. We are also good friends. I am grateful to have my teammates.

R: I am very fortunate to find a group which is friendly, happy, fun, and competitive yet harmonious at the same time. So thanks guys/girls!

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

H: Coaches are crucial to the team, in particular, cycling. They ensure the training is conducted in a safe manner and team members reach their peak athletic performance. We are more committed to join the trainings when there is a coach.

L: Very important. A professional coach serves many functions in a sports team including teaching us skills and tactics, helping us understand the sport in question, extending the limits of our physical and mental strengths and even correcting our wrong beliefs and bad habits.

R: Without a coach is like studying a book without a teacher to guide. The coach knows what we need to focus on and how to specifically train for those.

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

H: Yes, of course. It is one of my duties as a team captain.

L & R: Yes, definitely!

7. Can you share your feelings towards being awarded?

H: It is my honour to receive the award although many of my teammates are more outstanding than myself and deserve more to be awarded.

L: Surprised and happy! The word that popped into my head when I heard the news was “lucky”.

R: I am extremely honoured! I wouldn’t make it without the support of my fellow team members including incumbent and past captains and convenors of the Volleyball Team.

8. How would you define sportsmanship?

H: Continue to fight irrespective of the outcome. It is not uncommon to be defeated by other elite cycling teams in local competitions. Nevertheless, we strive to perform our best.

L: Play hardest, victory over oneself, handshake thereafter.

R: Never give up in the midst of adversity.

9. Is there any memorable sporting moment of yourself?

H: Completing a team time trial cycling race in an early rainy morning at freezing temperature with my teammates in Central is unforgettable.

L: In the preliminary round of a table tennis tournament back in my childhood days, when I thought I would lose to my opponent who was ten more points ahead in the last game, I relied on my never-give-up spirit and reversed the game. As a young kid, I overcame my mixed feeling of victory and embarrassment for my opponent and performed exceptionally well in the rest of the tournament and ended up taking home the champion title.

R: Yes, too many to remember! Few highlights as follows:

1) the first team meet up after the inception of our Volleyball Team;

2) winning volleyball championships (including the one in 2019) in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Lawyers Sports Meet;

3) (as you may guess) being nominated and selected as one of the recipients of this year’s Outstanding Performance Award; and

4) all the laughter and memories with the team.

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

H: Working in the legal profession is very demanding but is never an excuse to keep myself away from doing exercise. So long as one devotes to sports, it will become possible to squeeze an hour out from the ever busy and tight schedule.

L: Play first and you will know.

R: We always welcome members with different levels of skills so please feel free to join one of our volleyball sessions!

For those who are interested in joining the Programme after hearing from the awardees, the 2020 Programme is now open for enrollment. Please contact the Secretariat on RnS@hklawsoc.org.hk for programme and enrolment details.

(From left) Council Member and then RSC Vice-Chairman Mr. Roden Tong, Mr. Rodney Teoh, Mr. Hayson Yuen, Mr. Lit Tat Sing, Vice President CM Chan and then RSC Chairman Mr. Nick Chan at the award presentation ceremony.

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