|Grandmaster couple Nguyễn Ngọc Trường Sơn and Phạm Lê Thảo Nguyên have won three gold medals for Cần Thơ team. — Photo vov.vn|
HẠ LONG — As husband and wife, Nguyễn Ngọc Trường Sơn and Phạm Lê Thảo Nguyên can surely second-guess each other's moves.
That's why they make the perfect doubles partners at chess.
The grandmasters recently brought the Cần Thơ team three gold medals at the National Sports Games in Hạ Long City, Quảng Ninh Province.
Sơn and Nguyên defeated Nguyễn Thị Phương Thảo and Hoàng Cảnh Huấn of Đà Nẵng in the final of rapid chess of mixed doubles category to take gold.
In the qualifying round, the Sơn and Nguyên experienced nine intense matches with six wins and three draws to reach the finals.
The pair also brought home two gold medals in the standard chess and blitz chess categories.
Sơn is currently the No 2 chess master in Việt Nam. He has represented Việt Nam and taken high results in prestigious tournaments such as the Aeroflot Open, World Blitz Championship, Chess World Cup, and Chess Olympiad. He grabbed four gold medals in his first SEA Games in 2015 in Singapore when he was just 15.
Nguyên is the highest-ranking female chess master in the country. She was a member of the Vietnamese women's team, which won gold at the Asian championship, gold at the Asian Indoor Games in 2009, and a bronze at the 2010 Asian Games. She has played multiple times in the Women's Chess Olympiad in 2014, 2016 and 2018.
In the SEA Games 31 held in Việt Nam in May, both Sơn and Nguyên earned two gold medals each.
In the men’s individual rapid chess event, SEA Games 31 Lê Tuấn Minh won gold one round early when he beat all his opponents in eight consecutive games.
On the women’s side, Lương Phương Hạnh of Bình Dương made a big surprise when she lost only one game on her way to the championship. She beat rising young players like Bạch Ngọc Thùy Dương and Nguyễn Hồng Nhung.
In the men’s doubles event, Trần Tuấn Minh and Nguyễn Văn Huy brought Hà Nội gold medal. While Nguyễn Thị Thanh An and Nguyễn Thanh Thủy Tiên of HCM City defeated the duo from Ninh Bình to triumph in the women’s doubles category.
Hà Nội took the lead in the medal tally in chess event with five golds, followed by HCM City with four golds and Cần Thơ with three golds. VNS