Hong Kong’s Grace Lau has won the city’s first Olympic medal in karate at the women’s solo kata competition at the Tokyo Olympics.

Grace Lau performing at the women’s solo kata elimination round at the Tokyo Olympics. Photo: Sports Federation and Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, China.

Lau, 29, won bronze as Hong Kong’s only karateka competing at the Olympic games.

Grace Lau. Photo: Olympics screenshot.

She scored 26.94 in total, 18.90 in technical performance and 8.04 in athletic performance.

Lau told reporters after the match that the victory was very important to her, as she thanked people who have helped her along the way: “The Olympic Games are athletes’ highest and largest platform, it’s already incredible that [I] can participate in it, I’m happy that I have the ability to win this medal,” said Lau.

Hong Kong’s Grace Lau Mo-sheung performs in the women’s kata bronze medal bout of the karate competition during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Nippon Budokan in Tokyo on August 5, 2021. Photo: Alexander Nemenov/AFP.

“I also know that a lot of citizens watched karate for the first time because of me, I’m glad that I can have this opportunity to show people what kata competitions are like.”

Medal haul

The Tokyo Olympics was the first time Karate was listed as one of the games. The sport will not be featured at the 2024 Paris Olympics.

Lau brings home the city’s fifth Olympic medal and the second one on Thursday alone, after the women’s table tennis team scored bronze. It is the city’s most successful Olympics ever.

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Candice Chau

Candice is a reporter at Hong Kong Free Press. She previously worked as a researcher at a local think tank. She has a BSocSc in Politics and International Relations from the University of Manchester and a MSc in International Political Economy from London School of Economics.