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Tam, Quynh carry Vietnam’s Olympics hopes in boxing

Hanoi: Nguyen Thi Tam is expected to make her second Olympic appearance while Luu Diem Quynh hopes to make her debut at the largest global sporting event this summer.

Vietnam’s two highest potential boxers will seek their places at a World Qualification Tournament held from February 29-March 12 in Busto Arzizio, Italy.

Tam was the first female Vietnamese boxer to qualify for the Olympics at the Tokyo Games in 2021.

Competing in the women’s 50kg class, Tam has been Vietnam’s most experienced international fighter, a remarkable achievement to bring home.

In 2023, Tam made a big bang when she took a silver at the world championship. Unfortunately, she did not qualify for the Olympics as the event was not recognised as a qualification.

“Tam is training hard with highest determination for the Italian event,” said head coach Nguyen Nhu Cuong.

“She is in her peak currently and confident with her preparation. However, we are working with high alert because it is the world qualifier which will gather all the str
ongest competitors. It will not be easy to secure a place.”

While Tam is a famous veteran, Quynh is a rising star of the national team after she won bronze at the 19th Asian Games last October in China.

Quynh did not receive much attention until the Hangzhou Games, where she took the only medal for Vietnam boxing.

Other fighters of Vietnam are 2023 SEA Games champion Ha Thi Linh in the women’s 60kg; 2022 Thailand Open winner Vo Thi Kim Anh in the women’s 54kg; and 2023 world championship participant Nguyen Thi Thanh Hao in the women’s 57kg.

After Italy, athletes will have their last chance at the second World Qualification Tournament from May 23-June 3 in Bangkok, Thailand.

Athletes are training in Hanoi under the support of Thai expert Tawan Mungphingklang who came back to Vietnam in late 2023.

In his eight years working in Hanoi from 2013, he helped Vietnamese boxing gain 2019 world championship bronze, 2017 Asian championship gold and a 2020 Olympic spot, along with golds at the 2015 and 2019 SEA Gam

‘We have set specific goals for the qualifiers. Athletes are practicing hard under best conditions and their coaches make daily reports to us. It is all to help them get ready and have good results at the upcoming competitions,” said Dam Cong Dien of the Sports Authority of Vietnam’s Boxing Department.

As many as 50 athletes will qualify through the Italian tournament, including 22 women and 28 men.

Between 45 and 51 athletes (20-23 women and 25-28 men) will qualify through the Thai event.

At Paris 2024, a total of 248 boxers will compete, including 124 women and 124 men. Boxing competition will take between July 27 and August 10 in the Roland-Garros Stadium and the North Paris Arena./.

Source: Vietnam News Agency