Taekwondo athlete secures Vietnam's eighth Olympic berth
Truong Thi Kim Tuyen earned Vietnam's eighth Olympic slot on May 21 night in Amman, Jordan.
Truong Thi Kim Tuyen of Vietnam (right) tries to kick Fariza Aldangorova of Kazakhstan during their semi-finals of the women's U49kg category at the Asian Qualification Tournament for Tokyo Games in Amman, Jordan, on May 21. (Photo courtesy of World Teakwondo)
The taekwondo martial artist secured the berth in the final of the Asian Qualification Tournament for the Tokyo Games' women's U49kg category against Su Po-ya of Chinese Taipei.
The two finalists of each weight class win automatic slots to the Games, regardless of the result in the final.
The Vietnamese athlete earlier defeated Aneila Aysha Afsar of Pakistan 22-8 and Fariza Aldangorova of Kazakhstan 26-2 in previous rounds.
It is the first time the 24-year-old has qualified for the world's largest sporting event.
The fighter, from Vinh Long province, has practised taekwondo since she was 14. She pocketed a SEA Games gold medal in 2015, an Asian championship title in 2018, and silver from the world championship in 2017. Tuyen is currently No 12 in the world ranking.
Vietnam could secure another Olympics slot when Tran Thi Anh Tuyet competes on May 23 in the women's U57kg. She will face Jennifer Susan Lay Hsiao Seng of East Timor in the first match.
The Jordan qualifier is the last opportunity for Asian competitors to snatch Olympic berths. More than 80 athletes from 28 countries and territories are competing at the event on May 21-22 while the tournament for the Paralympic Games follows on May 23.
Tuyen's success brings Vietnamese taekwondo back to the Olympics after missing the previous edition in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in 2016.
Le Huynh Chau and Chu Hoang Dieu Linh both qualified for London 2012 but they did not perform well.
Tran Hieu Ngan was the first Vietnamese taekwondo athlete to compete at an Olympics at the 2000 Sydney event. She won a silver in the U57kg pool, which was Vietnam's first Olympic medal.
To date, Vietnam have secured Olympic berths in swimming, boxing, gymnastics, archery, rowing and taekwondo./. VNA
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