Judoka-turned-wrestler Van Ngoc Tu secured a gold medal in Kurash wrestling women’s 52kg on Saturday at the 4th Asian Beach Games in Thailand after defeating strong opponents.
The 27-year-old athlete from the Mekong Delta province of Soc Trang had an easy 1-0 win over Deepudsa Siramol of Thailand in the semifinals after being exempted from the qualifying round.
In the final match, Tu also won 1-0 over Chan Chinying of Taiwan to claim the third gold medal in her career of Kurash, an ancient type of upright jacket grappling which originated in the territory of modern Uzbekistan more than 3,500 years ago.
Tu and her two sisters began practicing Judo when they were young.
She became a national athlete in 2003 and won four gold medals in four consecutive South East Asian (SEA) Games from 2003-2009 with morote and uchimata moves, which helped her won Ippon points in the matches.
In 2009 when Vietnam hosted the 3rd Asian Indoor Games, Tu competed in Kurash wrestling and securing a gold medal to the surprise of local audience.
Tu became the first Vietnam athlete to win a gold medal since the 3rd Asian Beach Games in China when Vietnam only won two silver and one bronze medal.
Also on Saturday at the Asian Beach Games in Phuket, Nguyen Huyen Trang and Phan Thi Phuong won two bronzes in woodball women’s fairway individual.
By the end of Saturday, Vietnam ranked tenth with one gold, two silver and eight bronze medals, including two silvers and six bronzes in Jujitsu.
The 4th Asian Beach Games opened in Thailand on November 14, attracting 3,272 athletes from 43 Asian countries and territories to compete in a total of 196 categories in 26 sports.
Sending 138 athletes to compete in 18 events, Vietnam aims to win 2-3 gold medals and securing a place in the top ten at the biennial event, which will conclude on November 23.