Vietnamese martial arts expected to shine at Asian Games 19

August 19, 2023 - 08:54
Following their success at the 32nd SEA Games in Cambodia, athletes in disciplines such as wushu, karate, taekwondo, and jujitsu are diligently preparing to be at their best for the prestigious Asian event.
Karate martial artist Hoàng Thị Mỹ Tâm competes in the 32nd SEA Games in Cambodia. VNA/VNS Photo

Asian Games

HÀ NỘI — Vietnamese martial arts are poised to make a strong impression at the 19th Asian Games (ASIAD) scheduled to be held in China next month.

Following their success at the 32nd SEA Games in Cambodia, athletes in disciplines such as wushu, karate, taekwondo, and jujitsu are diligently preparing to be at their best for the prestigious Asian event.

The Vietnamese boxing team recently completed an intensive training trip in Uzbekistan and returned to the country in early August. The team's key boxers are in excellent form and fully prepared for the upcoming competition.

The karate team travelled to Japan for training with the primary goal of securing gold medals, with a particular emphasis on the kumite category.

The jujitsu team, including renowned athletes like Phùng Thị Huệ, Đặng Thị Huyền, Hoàng Thị Nhật Quế, and Lê Thị Thương, who have participated in world championships, will commence their training in the Philippines in early September.

Among them, Phùng Thị Huệ is highly anticipated as she has been a dominant force in the 45kg weight class, achieving both world and Asian champion titles for several years.

Meanwhile, the wushu team is currently training at home until August, after which they will travel to China for further training. Following their training sessions in China, they will finalise the list of athletes who will represent Việt Nam in the competition.

The Vietnamese wrestling team's objective for ASIAD 19 is to strive for medals. Key wrestlers will undergo a three-week training program in Japan starting on September 5. Some female wrestlers will receive training in Serbia.

The kurash fighters will focus on training domestically rather than going abroad. As for the judo team, they are considering sending players to compete in a tournament in Croatia to enhance their expertise.

Medal expectations

During the ASIAD 18 held in 2018 in Indonesia, Việt Nam secured an impressive haul of five gold medals, 15 silver medals, and 19 bronze medals.

Notably, the following martial arts teams clinched medals at the Games: wushu (two silvers, three bronzes), taekwondo (one bronze), boxing (one bronze), jujitsu (one bronze), karate (one bronze), kurash (one bronze), and wrestling (one bronze). The pencak silat team achieved remarkable success with two golds, seven silvers, and three bronzes.

With a strong track record and dedicated preparations, Vietnamese martial arts teams are poised to continue their success and bring home an impressive medal count from the 19th Asian Games in China.

The exclusion of pencak silat from the official competition programme at ASIAD 19 is a significant setback for Vietnamese sports, as the discipline has gained a great reputation in the regional arena. However, hopes are now placed on other disciplines, particularly on athletes such as Hoàng Thị Mỹ Tâm (karate), Hà Thị Linh (boxing), and Trương Thị Kim Tuyền (taekwondo).

Tuyền has received maximum investment in terms of training and participation in international competitions, which has helped her gain valuable experience. Similarly, Tâm is an experienced athlete who has competed at the 32nd SEA Games and the 2023 Asian Championship, while Linh is the defending champion from the 32nd SEA Games.

Nguyễn Thị Tâm, a female boxer, has the potential to secure a medal at ASIAD. However, she is still recovering from an injury sustained during the 32nd SEA Games, so it remains uncertain whether she will be able to compete in the Asian event. She previously won a silver medal at the world boxing championships.

In addition, the wushu team is eagerly awaiting the performance of Dương Thuý Vi, who won a gold medal at the 32nd SEA Games. Despite only achieving a bronze medal at the 2018 Asian Games, the coaching staff still has high expectations for her to contribute to Vietnamese wushu's medal tally at ASIAD 19.

The similarities between some of the competition categories at the 32nd SEA Games and ASIAD 19 make it feasible to set goals and expect success for her, according to Vũ Văn Trung, the official in charge of wushu at the Sports Department under the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism.

Although the absence of pencak silat is disappointing, Vietnamese athletes remain determined to excel in their respective disciplines and bring glory to the nation at ASIAD 19. VNS