The most prominent sport in Hong Kong is football or soccer. This sport enjoys a preeminent position on Hong Kong’s sporting scene as it is a legacy of the British. The English Premier League and other soccer matches are telecast live at clubs, bars and restaurants in Hong Kong. Moreover the territory also has its own football governing body, namely the Hong Kong Football Association that governs all levels of the game in Hong Kong.
Aside from football several other sports are played in Hong Kong like dragon boat racing, yachting, cycling, table tennis, swimming, cricket, tennis, badminton, handball, rugby, squash, tennis, volleyball and others. These sports are played in the various playgrounds and clubs that are located all over Hong Kong.
Hong Kong also regularly participates in the Summer and Winter Olympics and it participated in the Sydney Olympics in 2000 under its own flag. Additionally the equestrian events of the 2008 Beijing Games were held in Hong Kong.
Spectator sports like horse racing are also hugely popular in Hong Kong as the local population is extremely fond of gambling and betting. The city is equipped with two race courses at Happy Valley and Shatin, both of which are extremely crowded and busy on race days.
Some of the most important sporting venues in Hong Kong include:
The Hong Kong Coliseum
9 Cheong Wan Road,
Tel: 2355 7234
Box Office: 2355 7233
The Hong Kong Stadium
Hong Kong Stadium
55 Eastern Hospital Road,
So Kon Po, Hong Kong.
Tele : 2895 7926
The Queen Elizabeth Stadium
18, Oi Kwan Road,
Tel: 2591 1346
Box Office: 2591 1347
Happy Valley Racecourse
2 Sports Road,
Tel: 2895 1523
Most of these sports venues have their on box offices for tickets though tickets for major sporting events can also be bought from Hong Kong Ticketing (http://www.hkticketing.com/eng/).
Hong Kong is trying to promote itself as the “Events Capital of Asia” and is subsequently heavily involved in a number of activities. Some of the annual sporting events are listed below:
Hong Kong Sevens
This is a major event on the Hong Kong sporting calendar which lasts for three days. The event involves rugby teams from all over the world playing short games of rugby lasting 7 minutes each way. Some of the teams that regularly take part are Australia, Fiji, England, New Zealand and Japan. The event usually runs sometime in April at the Hong Kong Stadium. Tickets are extremely difficult to obtain but are usually issued through Hong Kong Ticketing (http://www.hkticketing.com). The official website of The Sevens is: http://www.hksevens.com/eng/home.php.
This two-day event sees teams from all over the world competing for the coveted Hong Kong Sixes trophy. Participating teams include England, Australia, The West Indies, Sri Lanka and New Zealand. The event runs in October/November every year at Kowloon Cricket Club. Tickets can be obtained from Hong Kong Ticketing (http://www.hkticketing.com).
Dragon Boat Races
Dragon boat races are extremely popular in Hong Kong and take place throughout the city. The teams attempt to be the quickest to paddle their 50-foot boats through the water to the finish line. Races take place at locations throughout Hong Kong and attract expats and locals all of whom seem to thrive in the party atmosphere. Tickets are not needed for the races and spectators are free to watch any event. For more information about upcoming races, visit the official website http://www.hkdba.com.hk.
Hong Kong Marathon
The Hong Kong Marathon, sponsored by Standard Chartered Bank, is an annual race held in February or March. More than 40,000 runners take part each year in the event, which includes a full marathon, a half marathon and a 10-kilometer run. Its official website is http://www.hkmarathon.com.
Hong Kong Open
The Hong Kong Open, co-sanctioned by the Asian Tour and the European Tour, was founded in 1959. It gained a new level of popularity when it became part of the European Tour schedule in 2001. The tournament is held at the Hong Kong Golf Club in Sheung Shui, New Territories, and is usually played in November or December.