Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — Đặng Thị Linh Phượng brought Việt Nam its second medal at the Rio Paralympics on Saturday.
Phượng won the bronze in the women’s powerlifting up-to-50kg category with a lift of 102kg in her second attempt. Phượng targeted 104kg in her last lift but fell short.
Ukranian legend Lidiia Soloviova won her third Paralympic gold medal, cheered by a very vocal Brazilian crowd.
Soloviova cleared 107kg to set a new Paralympic record and claimed the title ahead of Egypt’s Rehab Ahmed (104kg) and Phượng.
It is the first time for Phượng, an athlete from HCM City, to participate in a Paralympic. She won a silver medal in the Asian championship and is ranked fifth in the world tournament.
“I am taking part in the competition without any pressure. The confidence helped me win the medal. I am happy and want to say ‘thankyou’ to my coach Nguyễn Hồng Phúc,” said Phượng.
“The medal proved I chose the right sport. I am winning, thanks to my ability and determination,” she added.
Coach Phúc was also excited with the bronze.
“It is a surprise and an unexpected medal. Phượng did her best while training and when she competed to ensure today’s success,” he said.
Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Nguyễn Ngọc Thiện sent her a letter of congratulations and gave her a bonus of VNĐ10 million (US$450).
Phượng’s teammate Châu Hoàng Tuyết Loan could not notch a success in the women’s up-to-55kg pool.
Loan, who booked her berth in Rio after Russian athletes were banned, could lift only 88kg and finished seventh.
The 41-year-old did not match her best performance, partly because of her injury and also because she could practice for only a short time. She just had two weeks to prepare for the Games when she was named.
Mexican Perez Amalia, Nigeria’s Esther Oyema and Chinese Xiao Cuijuan managed to bag the top three positions in this pool, respectively.
Earlier, Vietnamese Nguyễn Bình An failed to grab a medal as expected.
An competed in the men’s up-to-54kg discipline. He committed an error in all the three attempts at 178kg and his result was not recognised. An’s best result was 180kg while he holds the Asian record of 179kg.
In swimming, medal hope Võ Thanh Tùng failed in the men’s 50m butterfly S5. He came seventh with a time of 39.13sec, which was even worse than the mark he set at the qualification rounds the previous day.
He Shiwei of China (35.74) took the gold, followed by Perkins Roy of the US (35.75) and Dias Danlel from the host country (36.86).
Five-time Asian Games winner will continue his quest in the 50m backstroke and 100m freestyle.
His female teammate, Trịnh Thị Bích Như, also bowed out of the tournament after she failed to make it to the final eight in the 50m freestyle S6 pool. Earlier, she finished eighth in the 50m butterfly event.
China continues leading the medal tally with 26 golds. Great Britain and Ukraine are following right behind.
Việt Nam with one gold and one silver stands at No 32. — VNS