29th September 2023 – (Hangzhou) Hong Kong judo representative Tsui Shuk-ki did not compete in the women’s 52kg elimination round at the Hangzhou Asian Games on Sunday (24th), resulting in a direct advancement for her South Korean opponent. In a recent written statement on Tuesday (28th), Tsui explained that she received a notification from the Sports Federation & Olympic Committee of Hong Kong on the morning of the competition, citing her injury as the reason for disqualifying her from the event. She expressed her frustration, saying, “I put in all my effort to advance to the Asian Games stage, but you effortlessly stripped me of my qualification to compete.”
Tsui suffered an injury during training in January this year, specifically a rupture of the anterior cruciate ligament and medial collateral ligament in her right knee. After consulting with the medical team and her coach, she decided to forgo surgery temporarily and opted for rehabilitation in preparation for the Hangzhou Asian Games.
She noted that her right knee recovered faster than an average person’s, allowing her to resume training quickly. Just three months after her injury, she won a bronze medal at the Asian Championships in Kuwait at the end of April. However, a week before the Asian Games, she was informed that the chief doctor of the Asian Games doubted the severity of her injury. She complied with the request for an examination but did not receive any updates. Despite this, she flew to Hangzhou as planned to prepare for the competition, only to have her qualification revoked on the morning of the event. She expressed disbelief, stating, “I believed my results were the best proof, but I cannot fathom how they could overturn the previous medical examinations so easily. They based their decision solely on the magnetic resonance imaging report from January when I got injured and so-called authoritative literature, stripping me of my eligibility to compete.”
Tsui presented a nearly perfect functional test result and believed her achievements were enough evidence for her return to the competition. However, the Sports Federation & Olympic Committee rejected her participation with “repetitive emails that remained unchanged.” She criticized the committee for not standing on the athletes’ side, saying, “You claim to always stand by the athletes, but have you personally examined me? Have you asked about my competition goals? You made a rash decision that affected my athletic career without proper planning for my treatment.” She expressed deep regrets to her family and friends who specially travelled to Hangzhou to support her.