Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — Trương Thị Kim Tuyền will be Việt Nam’s sole representative competing at the 2017 World Taekwondo Grand Prix to be held in Rabat, Morocco on September 22-24.
20-year-old martial artist Tuyền will compete in the women’s U49kg category against 32 rivals from around the world. She is now ranked world No 26.
A maximum of 32 athletes are invited in each of the eight Olympic weight categories of the event. There can be no more than two athletes from each country in each category. However, host Morocco is allowed one extra athlete.
“I will make every effort in each match to win a medal,” Tuyền told Việt Nam News.
Coach Vũ Anh Tuấn will accompany her to the event.
Tuyền, who was born in the Mekong Delta province of Vĩnh Long, pocketed a silver medal at the Muju WTF World Taekwondo Championships in South Korea in June.
The victory marked the first time Viet Nam has won a silver medal in taekwondo, previously having won five bronzes over the past 22 years — two at the world tournament in 1995, and one each in 1999, 2005 and 2011.
However, in the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in Malaysia last month, Tuyền failed to defend her title in the women’s 46kg division. She only managed to take home a silver medal.
According to Tuyền, the loss has pushed her to try harder at the upcoming international event.
Vũ Xuân Thành, head of the taekwondo section of the National Sports Administration, said that after the SEA Games, Tuyền trained very hard to prepare for the Morocco event, which is the second Grand Prix of the year, where she will compete for Olympic ranking points and sporting glory.
The victor in each category wins US$5,000 in prize money; the silver medalist gets $3,000; and the two bronze medalists go home with $1,000 each.
The third Grand Prix of 2017 will be held in London, Great Britain, from October 20-22 one day after the seventh World Para-Taekwondo Championship takes place, also in London. — VNS