Wednesday, July 18 2018


Olympic hopefuls have five chances

Update: February, 11/2012 - 10:54


High hopes: Truong Thanh Hang is expected to book a berth at the London Olympics. — VNA/VNS Photo
HA NOI — Three Vietnamese athletes expected to book a berth at the London Olympics for Viet Nam are Truong Thanh Hang, Vu Thi Huong and Duong Thi Viet Anh. The trio have five chances left to qualify.

Middle-distance sprinter Hang will leave for China in April for a one-month training course in preparation for the three-round Asian Grand Prix tournament in Thailand in May.

Hang, a regular on the podium, will race in the women's 1500m event. Despite success at the Indonesian SEA Games last November her results were not enough to qualify for the Olympics.

According to the rule, Hang must finish in 4min 8sec, the B standard, while her personal best was 4:9.58 set at Guangzhou's Asian Games in November 2010.

Short-distance sprinter Huong will enjoy a training course in Germany starting in April before joining Hang in Thailand.

Huong failed to defend two titles at the SEA Games due to injury but will run in the women's 200m track event.

After her unexpected loss in Indonesia, Huong's performance has been questioned, which her coach Nguyen Dinh Minh said would weigh on her in future competitions.

High-jumper Anh will compete in an indoor tournament to be organised in China later this month where she is expected to reach the standard.

Anh grabbed a gold medal at the SEA Games with a result of 1.9m and needs to conquer only 2cm to be the first Vietnamese track and field athlete to compete at the Olympics with an official berth.

The second chance to qualify for these Vietnamese athletes will be at the Asian Athletic Stars Championships in Kazakhstan from May 30-June 1.

Hang will have a greater chance of success here as her favourite event the 800m will be organised. Hang's best result of 2.00.91 is enough to knock-out the B standard which is 2.01.30.

"People have encouraged me a lot - and getting an automatic ticket is great motivation. Competing in the Olympics is a wish of many athletes, including me. I've been dreaming of it these last two years and I will not fail people's trust," said Hang.

Huong is also expected to do well in Kazakhstan, with her preferred 100m event, where she must save seconds of her personal best to secure a spot in London. She was the only Asian athlete to enter the final round of the Beijing Olympics, against the eight strongest runners of the world.

"It is really difficult,but that doesn't mean they won't make it. They're in intensive training and are showing good results," said Duong Duc Thuy, head of the Athletics Department of the National Administration of Sports and Physical Training.

If the three fail to qualify in Asia, they will be registered to take part in three tournaments in England, Belgium and Switzerland in June. — VNS

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