|Success: Phan Thi Ha Thanh poses with Viet Nam's first Asian Games medal, which she won in the women's vault event in Incheon yesterday. — VNS Photo Huu Quy
HA NOI (VNS) — Wushu martial artist Bui Truong Giang missed out on the sanshou (combat) gold medal yesterday at the Incheon Asian Games because of diarrhea.
Truong was not in his best condition when taking part in the men's 56kg final against Chinese Zhao Fuxiang. The Vietnamese player could not stay strong during the match, although his rival was said to be not as good as him.
"Zhao is not very strong compared to Giang, who triumphed in the world youth championships last year after beating Zhang in the final match," said coach Phan Quoc Vinh of Viet Nam.
Giang, 18, lost 0-2 and took silver, Viet Nam's best result in the fifth day of competition in South Korea.
"He suffered diarrhea and was exhausted before the final. But anyway, silver was a good sign for his career in the future," Vinh said.
"I unfortunately got bad luck ahead of the match. However, I have to accept it. The ASIAD silver is a valuable award for me," Giang said.
Wushu competition wrapped up with one gold, one silver and four bronze medals.
Viet Nam also received a silver in the women's rowing team event thanks to quartet Le Thi An, Pham Thi Hue, Pham Thi Thao and Pham Thi Hai.
Earlier Le Thu Huyen came third in the women's single sculls, with a time of 9 minutes and 16.36 seconds. The winner was South Korean Kim Yeji and was followed by Lee Ka Man from Hong Kong.
Yesterday, golden girl of Viet Nam Phan Thi Ha Thanh competed in the women's vault event. However, she failed to score a title against powerful rivals from North Korea and Uzbekistan.
Thanh finished her performance with 14,683 points, the highest among the five first participants. But Korean Un Jong-hong's perfect jump lifted her to the top position with 15,166 points. The former Olympic champion pushed Thanh down to second place before Uzbek veteran Oksana Chusovitina pushed her deeper in the rankings after a jump of 14,750 points.
It seemed to be the last medal for Chusovitina, 39, before she said goodbye to athletic life.
Thanh's bronze was Viet Nam's first-ever ASIAD gymnastics medal.
The Hai Phong-born gymnast still has two more chances to pocket a gold here, as she will compete in the floor and beam events today.
After Thanh, Dang Nam pocketed his own bronze in the men's rings event. Like his female teammate, Nam led the ranking with 15,033 points before the last three athletes took their turn. China's Liao Junlin (15,566) and Japan's Takeda Kazuyuki (15,100) then stole the limelight and took first and second places, respectively.
Viet Nam also pocketed a bronze medal in the men's team 25m rapid pistol event.
Earlier, swimmer Tran Duy Khoi finished seventh in the men's 400m individual medley with a time of 4 minutes and 24.54 seconds, setting a new national record.
Among three Vietnamese players in badminton starting yesterday, only Pham Cao Cuong took a win. Cuong beat U Leong Lek of Macau 21-8, 21-9 in the men's singles.
Meanwhile Le Thu Huyen lost 12-21, 12-21 to host player Sung Jihyun and Vu Thi Trang was defeated 12-21, 17-21 by former world champion Ratchanok Intanon of Thailand in the women's singles.
After five days, Viet Nam are in 12th position with one gold, four silvers and 13 bronzes. — VNS