|Nguyễn Tiến Nhật (right) wins men's epee title at the SEA Games 31 on May 14. VNA/VNS Photo Trần Thanh Giang|
Athletes from Việt Nam and the Philippines won gold on the second day of the fencing in Hà Nội on May 14.
Việt Nam's veteran Nguyễn Tiến Nhật remained on top of the men's individual epee fencing event, winning gold on a grey afternoon.
Nhật won all matches in qualification to advance to the knockout stage.
He beat Mohamed Mohamad Roslan of Malaysia 15-10 in the quarterfinal. In the semifinal, he overcame Lee Simon Renjie of Singapore 10-8.
In the final, he met Jose Noelito of the Philippines who has shown outstanding performance in the Games.
Noelito earlier dominated I Jie Koh of Malaysia, 15-5, in the semifinal and beat Jian Tong Si To 15-12 in the elimination. He also beat Thai Nattiphong Singkham and Vietnamese Nguyễn Phước Đến with a pair of 5-1 victories in the preliminaries.
However, the Filipino could not be compared with reigning champion Nhật who is experienced and received strong local support at the Mỹ Đình Indoor Athletics Palace.
Nhật excelled over his rival to win 15-11.
"I am happy with the gold, which contributes a little to my country's achievement in this SEA Games," said Nhật, who has won four SEA Games golds since the 2015 Games.
"This Games, I met with more difficulties to defend my title because my rivals were stronger, especially Jose Noelito."
It is the second gold of the fencing team after the sabre title by Vũ Thành An on May 13.
Nhật will continue to defend Việt Nam's title in the team event in the next few days.
Samantha Catantan delivered the Philippine fencing team’s first gold in the women's event.
Catantan outlasted Singapore’s Maxine Jie Xin Wong with a thrilling 14-12 victory in the women’s individual foil final.
The Filipino fencer, who settled for bronze in the 2019 biennial meet, completed a dominant title run, including a masterful 15-4 win over Thailand’s Chayabutphat Shinnakerdchoke in the semi-final.
She also beat Vietnamese Nguyễn Thị Thu Phương 15-7 in the quarterfinal and Đỗ Thị Anh 15-8 in the last 16.
Wong, who asked for a time-out several times because of her hand injury, defeated her compatriot Kemei Cheung 15-10 in their all-Singaporean semi-final duel, only to bow out to Catantan and gain silver. VNS