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Thảo, Tùng honoured as Athletes of the Year

Update: January, 17/2018 - 01:00
Long jumper Bùi Thị Thu Thảo takes the trophy for Female Athlete of 2017 at the Victory Cup yesterday in Hà Nội. — Photo webthethao.vn
Viet Nam News

HÀ NỘI — Bùi Thị Thu Thảo was honoured as Female Athlete of the Year at the Victory Cup awards ceremony yesterday in Hà Nội.

Long jumper Thảo overcame runner Nguyễn Thị Huyền and swimmer Nguyễn Thị Ánh Viên to take the prestigious trophy.

Thảo persuaded the judges and the public with her impressive results in 2017. She won one gold at the Asian championship, two others at the Asian Grand Prix and one title at the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games.

Thảo secured more 90 per cent of the total votes while Viên took only 7 per cent and Huyền grabbed about 2 per cent.

"It is my great honour to receive the trophy. It means that people recognized my hard labour in sport. It will push me to try harder and harder for better results in the future," said Thảo, who is Việt Nam’s golden hope at the coming Asian Games in Indonesia this August.

Lê Thanh Tùng won the trophy for Male Athlete of the year.

The Asian gymnastics champion beat two weightlifters, Thạch Kim Tuấn and Trịnh Văn Vinh, both world winners, to top the category for the first time.

Tùng bagged 87 per cent of votes after winning one Asian tournament gold medal and three others at the SEA Games.

After taking his trophy Tùng gave his deep thanks to all people especially coach Trương Minh Sang who was always with him in difficult times.

Football trainer Mai Đức Chung was voted Coach of the Year.

He won a SEA Games gold medal with the women’s team and helped the men’s squad win important matches on the way to the Asian Cup finals.

The women’s team he coached, who will take part in April’s Asian Cup in Jordan, was the Team of the Year.

World champion Lê Văn Công had no worthy rival as he won the Athlete with Disabilities class.

In 2017, Công not only won his first world title but also set a new world record.

He also triumphed at all other competitions he took part in, including the Southeast Asian ParaGames and the national championship.

Swimmer Nguyễn Hữu Kim Sơn overcame two strong candidates—chess master Phạm Trần Gia Phúc and boxer Đỗ Hồng Ngọc—to become the Young Athlete of the Year.

Sơn, however, was training abroad and could not receive his trophy yesterday.

Though Phúc failed in Young Athlete class, he was the popular favourite for sport person of the year.

The nine-year-old athlete was added to the list of contenders only a few weeks before the deadline of the vote after he won five international gold medals. He made a great impression among voters and overcame many strong candidates to take the trophy.

It was the only category announced ahead of the awarding ceremony yesterday.

The little winner charmed people at the awards ceremony with his thanks to his mother, his coach and fans who supported him in competitions and voted for him.

At the ceremony, organisers honoured the Impressive Image of the Year, a photograph that featured runner Nguyễn Thị Oanh helping her exhausted teammate Phạm Thị Huệ at the women’s 5,000m race during the SEA Games in Malaysia last August.

Hoàng Vĩnh Giang, vice president of the Asian Olympic Council, vice president of the Việt Nam Olympic Committee, was given the trophy of Lifetime Achievement Award for his contributions to national sport for many years.

The Victory Cup is codifferent from other awards that have been organised for a long time. While the other programmes honour the best athlete in a sport or 10 outstanding sportsmen of the year, Victory Cup gives one trophy to each winner of different categories. 

It is the reason why the award is considered the Oscars of Vietnamese sport, the first of its kind.

Organisers hope that the trophy will push winning athletes forward in their careers while encouraging others to reach higher result and gain recognition by the public through the Cup.

The event is jointly organized by the Việt Nam Cable Television Corporation, the Sport 24h Company and the Việt Nam Administration of Sports. It was first held in 2015. — VNS

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