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Men and women athletes busy during Tet

Update: February, 07/2016 - 18:40
Swimmer Nguyen Thi Anh Vien has had her sixth Tet far from home. — File Photos

HA NOI (VNS) — Many people are heading home to unite with their families after a hard working year. Other are making final preparations to decorate their homes to celebrate the Lunar New Year. Many athletes, however, have no such planned celebrations. Indeed, these athletes do not enjoy Tet, as they continue their intensive training before upcoming tournaments.

For instance, this is the sixth year in a row that swimmer Nguyen Thi Anh Vien must celebrate the new year far from her home.

Vien is with her coach, Dang Anh Tuan, in the US as she trains for this summer's Olympic Games in Brazil.

She recalled that in earlier years she felt homesick, but now it is easier to be far from home.

The Viet Nam athlete said in 2015, which was her first Tet in the US, she was 15. Vien was allowed to call her parents on new year's eve, but could not speak and burst into tears.

"I am not at home for another Tet, but it's ok. Everything I do is for my best results and for the nation's glory. It will be my pride," said Vien.

Like Vien, runners Quach Thi Lan and her older brother Quach Cong Lich are also in the US, training hard for a berth at the Rio de Janeiro games.

"It is my first Tet without my parents. I called my mom. She and my father are not happy, because both of their children are not coming home. But it is ok because of our duty," said Lich, who is competing for an Olympic ticket from the Asian Indoor Athletics Championships in Qatar later this year.

Walker Nguyễn Thi Thanh Phuc is excited training for tournament although she cannot taste Tet with her family.

Also, walker Nguyen Thi Thanh Phuc is currently in China. Phuc is the favourite track-and-field athlete to win at the coming Asian Walking Championships in Japan this March.

Her coaches have said if Phuc maintains her progress, she could reach her target.

"I am more excited about the Olympics than Tet, which happens every year," said Phuc.

"It might be my last chance to compete in an Olympics, so I have a special feeling and am waiting for the competition," she added.

Ha Noi T&T players will play in South Korea during Tet.

Further, Ha NOI T&T players leave for their AFC Champions League competition today. They will welcome the new year on an airplane and compete against Pohang Steelers in South Korea on February 9, the second day of the Lunar New Year.

Midfielder Luong Xuan Trưởng said goodbye to his parents some days ago, as he flew to South Korea to join his new team, Incheon United FC.

The futsal team is preparing in Uzbekistan for the Asian championship.

Also, the national futsal team is in Uzbekistan to train for the Asian Championship.

Their first match will be on February 10, the third day of the new year. And if they win, they will remain in Tashkent until February 21.

"This is the second time I am celebrating Tet abroad," said captain Nguyen Bao Quan.

"Yes, it is a little sad when we are not with our families for the most important time of the year. But we have put our sadness aside to focus on winning a World Cup ticket during this tournament," Quan said.

Basketball team Saigon Heat share the same situation.

The national professional club have to travel and play Filipinas in the Philippines in the ASEAN League today, the last day of the year, before flying to Thailand for a game against Mono Vampire on February 13, the sixth day into the new year.

Yet tennis player Ly Hoang Nam is a bit luckier, as he welcomes new year'seve with his family before leaving for the first tournament of the year in China on February 9, on the second day of the Lunar New Year. — VNS

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