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Huyen speeds to her third gold medal

Nguyen Thi Huyen completed her hattrick at the Singapore SEA Games, winning her third gold medal yesterday.

Huyen finished first in the women’s 400m event with a time of 52sec, followed by teammate Quach Thi Lan and Vallabouy Shereen Samson of Malaysia.

Yet again: Nguyen Thi Huyen poses with her third gold medal after she triumphed in the women's 400m event.
Yet again: Nguyen Thi Huyen poses with her third gold medal after she triumphed in the women’s 400m event.

The result, which is Huyen’s personal best, brings her the second ticket to compete at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics next summer.

Two days earlier, the Nam Dinh Province native triumphed in the 400m hurdles and 4x400m relay, setting two records.

“Success never comes easily. Sweet results come after great effort. I will have to try harder in the future,” Huyen said.

“Her speed is incredible, much better than what she did in training. I am surprised with her winning three gold medals,” said coach Vu Ngoc Loi.

“Huyen is training without comfortable conditions, as our infrastructure is poor and we have not enough expert or doctors to take care of her. So, if she received better support she would go much further,” Loi said.

In the final day of competitions, Vietnamese also won seven silver medals in different categories, including the men’s 400m, women’s and men’s 3,000m steeplechase and women’s high jumping.

In taekwondo, Truong Thi Kim Tuyen won one of three gold medals for Viet Nam.

Tuyen defeated Bermejo Irene Therese of the Philippines 19-7 to win the title in the women’ U46kg category.

Earlier, her teammates triumphed in the poomsae (peformance) events.

Nguyen Minh Tu and Nguyen Minh Van won the mixed pair class this morning.

The Vietnamese duo earned 7.885 points to take the lead, followed by Malaysia and Singapore.

Van and Tu are said to be the shortest pair in the world of taekwondo, as Tu is 1.50 and weighs 42kg and Van is 1.55, weighing 38kg.

When they stepped on the competition map, many people laughed at their size.

However, the duo needed only several minutes to make admire their abilities and applaud them.

Their fluent, strong and impressive moves persuaded the judges, as they received the highest scores among competitors.

“They are like tiny ones and nobody believes they are taekwondo athletes. However, do not look down at them, they can make everybody take their hats off,” said coach Le Minh Khuong.

Tu and her former partner, Nguyen Dinh Toan, are the world defending champion. Though Van took part in his first SEA Games, he quickly won victory.

“We deeply understand each other, since we have been training together for a long time. It played a key role in our win today,” said Tu.

Van said that despite being a little nervous, he was very confident and believed in a victory.

“I don’t mind what people said about our height. I just give them a smile. Our small size is not a problem in us, otherwise it keeps us balanced better,” said Tu.

The other medal went to Chau Tuyet Van, Nguyen Thi Le Kim and Nguyen Thuy Xuan Linh in the women’s team pool.

Earlier, one of the judges made a mistake and forgot to give points to the Vietnamese players, leading to their second rank overall with 7.830 points, behind Thailand (7.900).

Classy: Taekwondo trio of Viet Nam win a gold medal in the women’s poomsae (performance) event in Singapore’s SEA Games yesterday.

Vietnamese officials complained to the organising board. After a review, Viet Nam and Thailand had to perform again and, this time, Viet Nam won with 8.130 points. Thailand came in second with 8.030.

“Mistakes of judges are normal in taekwondo. In this case, our athletes are the defending champions and also world winners, and they performed very well, so we decided to issue a complaint. Fortunately, the mistake has been corrected,” said Vu Xuan Thanh, head of Taekwondo Department of the National Sports Administration.

Athlete Van was also very happy when she took the title back.

“I am happy that we could take the medal back from the judges. I cried a lot when we placed second. But it is okay now. Thank you to everybody who supported us,” Van said.

The Vietnamese men’s team, however, only won a silver medal, and placed after the Philippines.

Viet Nam’s Le Nghia won the men’s trap shooting individual gold at the National Shooting Centre yesterday.

Nghia shot 12 out of 15 targets, against Malaysia’s Chen Seong Fook in the gold-medal match, while Chen shot 10 out of 15 and to win a silver medal.

Singapore’s Mohamed Zain won the bronze.

After seven days, Thailand, who grabbed 16 titles yesterday, replace Singapore in the top podium with 71 gold medals. The hosts are second with one less. Viet Nam drop to third place with 62.