Swimmers eye Paralympic entry

by VNS02 July 2015 Last updated at 15:07 PM

VTV.vn - The four-member Vietnamese swimming team with disabilities is ready for the 2015 IPC Swimming World Championships in Glasgow, Scotland, from July 13-19.

"They aim to earn 11 ‘A' standards to qualify for the 2016 Paralympic Games in Brazil. If the team is lucky enough, it can earn one medal in Glasgow," said coach Dong Quoc Cuong.

Cuong said this was the second time Vietnam had taken part in the world event. The last event was in Eindhoven, the Netherlands, in 2011.

Vietnam's medal winning hopes are being pinned on Asian gold medallists Vo Thanh Tung, who competed at the London Paralympic Games in 2012.

The southern province of Can Tho-born Tung will compete in five different categories of men's 50m freestyle-S5, 100m freestyle-S5, 200m freestyle-S5, 50m butterfly-S5 and 50m backstroke-S5.

"I feel very comfortable playing at the world event. I will try my best to gain a medal and at least three A standards to secure tickets to compete in Brazil," Tung said.

"The event will give us a chance to test ourselves against the best athletes all over the world," Tung added.

In the above categories, the 50m freestyle and 100m freestyle are Tung's strongest points with times of 34.6sec and 1:19.6. He is the Asian record holder in these disciplines.

According to Cuong, Tung will have to beat strong rivals from Brazil, the US and Spain to reach his target. One tough rival will be Daniel Dias of Brazil who won golds in 50m, 100m and 200m freestyle in the IPC world event two years ago.

At the 2014 Asian Para Games held in October last year in Incheon, the Republic of Korea, Tung bagged five gold medals in the same categories he will compete in Glasgow.

Tung, who contracted polio when he was four, topped the list of the five Best Athletes with Disabilities in 2014. His coach, Cuong, is in first position on the list of Vietnam's top outstanding paralympic coaches.

Nguyen Thanh Trung, Do Thanh Hai and Trinh Thi Bich Nhu will also take part in the seventh edition of this world event. Trung will compete in the men's 50m backstroke and 100m breast stroke-SB4. Hai will play in the men's 100m backstroke and 100m breast stroke-SP4. Nhu will partake in the women's 100m butterfly and 50m freestyle-SP5.

The athletes have been training in Ho Chi Minh City since early this year to prepare for the championship, which attracts about 580 athletes from nearly 70 countries.

The Vietnamese team will leave for Glasgow on July 10.

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