Following are the top ten Vietnamese athletes with excellent performance at the Games selected by Nhan Dan Online.
1. Nguyen Thi Anh Vien (three gold medals, swimming)
Vien is the only female swimmer to secure three individual gold medals at this year’s SEA Games, taking one gold advantage over region-famous swimmers including Li Tao of Singapore and Junkrajang of Thailand.
She also won the most medals for the Vietnam sports contingent with a total grand of six – three gold medals in the 200m backstroke, 200m medley and 400m medley; two silver in the 100m backstroke and 400m freestyle; and one bronze in the 800m freestyle discipline.
Vien polished her outstanding achievements by breaking two SEA Games records in the women’s 200m backstroke and 400m medley events, with respective time of 2:14.80 and 4:46.16.
2. Vu Thi Huong (two gold medals, track-and-field)
The ‘queen of speed’ staged a stunning comeback from injury with a double of gold medals in the women’s 100m and 200m dashes. Huong finished the 200m race in 23.55 seconds, surpassing the Asian gold medal by 0.07 second.
Huong also contributed significantly to Vietnam’s 4x100m relay silver medal, producing a lightning sprint which lifted her team from fourth to aggregate second place with 44.99 seconds.
3. Thach Kim Tuan (two gold medals, weightlifting)
The 19-year-old weightlifter helped Vietnam defend the men’s 56kg crown won by Tran Le Quoc Tuan at the 26th SEA Games in Indonesia. He took the gold medal with a total lift of 285kg and broke two SEA Games records with a snatch lift of 129kg and clean and jerk lift of 156kg.
2013 seems to be a perfect year for Tuan as he enriched his medal collection with additional three world bronze, three Asian silver and two SEA Games gold medals.
4. Nguyen Van Lai (two gold medals, track-and-field)
Nguyen Van Lai was the most notable name of Vietnam track-and-field at this year’s SEA Games. He exceeded expectations with two precious gold medals in the men’s 5,000m (14:19.35) and 10,000m (29:44.82), which have never been Vietnam’s strengths at a SEA Games competition.
Lai’s surprising gold medals helped the national track-and-field team realise their target of winning 10-12 gold medals set prior to the Games.
5. Hoang Xuan Vinh (three gold medals, shooting)
Prominent shooter Hoang Xuan Vinh continued to have a successful SEA Games season as he accounted for three of the seven gold medals won by Vietnamese marksmen at the 27th Games in Myanmar – one individual in the 10m air pistol and two team medals in the 10m air pistol and 50m slow fire pistol events.
This is the fourth consecutive time Vinh has defended his 10m air pistol title at the biggest regional sporting event.
6. Van Ngoc Tu (one gold medal, Judo)
After her shocking quarterfinal loss at the 26th SEA Games two years ago, top Vietnam judoka Van Ngoc Tu made an impressive return at this year’s Games with the women’s 48kg championship title.
She knocked out her Filipino opponent Helen Wada in just 30 seconds to claim her fifth gold medal in her six times to participate in the SEA Games competition. Tu is also one of the few Vietnamese athletes to bag five SEA Games gold medals.
7. Luu Thi Duyen (one gold medal, boxing)
Luu Thi Duyen made history as the first Vietnamese female boxer to win a SEA Games gold medal following her victory over Sudaporan Seesondee of Thailand in the women’s 60kg finals on December 14.
8. Nguyen Ngoc Truong Son (two gold medals, chess)
Vietnam’s chess prodigy Nguyen Ngoc Truong Son had an extremely successful SEA Games competition as he finished supreme in both the rapid and blitz chess podiums.
Notably in both events, Son claimed the championship title with one round left to play, which has demonstrated his superiority at the regional arena.
9. Do Thi Thao (two gold medals, track-and-field)
Young talent Do Thi Thao proved herself as a worthy successor to her senior Truong Thanh Hang in middle distances by winning the 800m and 1,500m races at the 27th SEA Games.
The two precious SEA Games gold medals wrapped up a successful year to the 17-year-old girl. Earlier in May, Thao impressed spectators with three silver medals on the 800m race at the Asian Athletics Grand Prix competition in Thailand and Sri Lanka.
10. Pham Thi Binh (one gold medal, track-and-field)
Pham Thi Binh clinched the women’s marathon crown after finishing the race in two hours, 45 minutes and 34 seconds.
This is Vietnam’s first gold medal in marathon, the most difficult track and field discipline, and a precious reward for the girl from Quang Ngai province, who used to overcome her innate heart disease to start the track-and-field career.-VNA