SEA Games 31: Vietnam aims high in martial arts hinh anh 1Vietnamese wushu artist Duong Thuy Vi. (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) - Vietnam's martial arts teams are considered a potential 'gold mine' any SEA Games, and this year's edition is no exception.

Winning a gold medal in Kurash marked a good start for the hosts. “It is an honour for us to win Vietnam’s first gold medal. It is even greater that the Vietnamese Kurash team have fulfilled their gold target in just the first two days,” team manager Nguyen Huu An told reporters at Hanoi’s Hoai Duc Gymnasium. 

“To accomplish the goals, Vietnam’s Kurash team has not underestimated our rivals and remained focused,” he added.

Manager of the Vovinam team Ngo Ba Huy said his players are in good spirits. The team has been training twice a day but were being careful to avoid picking up injuries, he said.

Huy added many Southeast Asian countries have improved in Vietnam’s traditional martial art, so this year’s competition will be exciting.

Vietnamese wushu athletes are also in high spirits ahead of SEA Games 31, team manager Vu Van Trung said, noting the team is aiming for at least five gold medals.

Vietnam expects to see five athletes competing in kickboxing finals, said team leader Vu Duc Thanh. He further noted that Vietnamese boxers have been in Bac Ninh for training and two medal hopefuls - Nguyen Van Duong and Nguyen Thi Tam - are ready to give it their best shots.

Karate, Taekwondo and Judo athletes are also keeping their spirits high for the region’s biggest sports event. Coach Nguyen Duy Khanh of the Judo team said the training trip in Mongolia in March as well as intensive tactical training has made his team more confident./.