Vietnam hero breaks SEA Games triple jump record

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Nguyen Van Hung set a new SEA Games record as he took the gold in the men's triple jump at the 27th South East Asian Games in Myanmar on Thursday.

The 24-year-old Vietnamese jumper broke the 2011 SEA Games record of 16.51m set by Thai jumper Philakong by jumping an astounding 16.67 meters .

After the first five jumps, Hung was in third with 16.24m, behind Philakong (16.26m) and Malaysian jumper Hakimi Ismail (16.44m).

The Malaysian jumper was happily waiting for a gold medal when Hung made his final jump and snatched the win instead. Hung's 16.67m achievement also broke his national record of 16.41m.

Hung's coach Nguyen Trong Ho happily said, "Hung's victory in the men's triple jump at this SEA Games event is like revenge on Philakong. At the previous SEA Games, Hung was about to win the gold when the Thai rival made a final jump that was 4cm more."

In other action, senior lieutenant Nguyen Van Lai won the men's 10,000m gold medal after taking the 5,000m gold the day before.

On Wednesday, Van Lai was in second place for most of the 5,000m, before sprinting for gold at the finish. He employed the same strategy in the 1,500m event and ran behind the race's leaders before speeding up in the final 200m to win the gold.

"Considering Srisung [of Thailand] and Prayogo [of Indonesia] were my major competitors, I tried to keep close to them. When Srisung began to speed up, I tried to follow him, waiting to overtake him," Lai said.

Lai was successful and won the gold medal with a time of 29 minutes 44.82 seconds, breaking the Vietnam national record of 30 minutes 14.13 seconds.

Meanwhile Do Thi Thao proved to be an outstanding substitute for Truong Thanh Hang by winning two gold medals in the women's 800m and 1,500m races. Thanh Hang could not defend her championships due to injuries but Do Thi Thao made her country more than proud.

The Vietnamese athletes won a total 10 gold medals on Thursday to take their total gold tally to 64, behind top-placed Thailand with 82 gold medals. Host Myanmar is in third with 61 gold medals.

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