Vietnamese badminton player Vu Thi Trang earned a berth in the final round of the Asia Championships yesterday in Chinese Taipei.
Trang, a Youth Olympics bronze medalist, defeated Renu Chandrika Hettiarachchige of Sri Lanka 21-8, 21-6 in the first round of qualifiers while also defeating Mei Hui Chiang from Chinese Taipei 21-13, 21-16 in the second round.
She will battle Nichaon Jindapon of Japan today.
Trang will also pair up with Nguyen Thi Sen later in the tournament to compete in the women's doubles event. They will clash against home team duo Wen Hsing Cheng and Pei Chen Hsieh.
On the men's side, Viet Nam's top player Nguyen Tien Minh will play familiar rival Yan Kit Chan of Hong Kong. Minh is the tournament's No 5 seed and world No 10. He has also beaten Chan in their last three encounters.
Another Vietnamese player, Do Duc Tuan, will face several formidable opponents, including China's Lin Dan, who is the Olympic champion and former world No 1.
At the same time Nguyen Hoang Nam will play Rafael Zakirov of Uzbekistan while Pham Cao Cuong will meet Wei Sheng Loh from Malaysia.
In the men's double pool, Duong Bao Duc and Nguyen Hoang Nam also advanced after two wins in the qualifying stages. The duo will play Tarun Kona and Arun Vishnu of India.
The final matches are set for April 21 and the tourney's winners stand to claim up to US$200,000.-VNS