The team includes outstanding swimmers who won medals at the recent Southeast Asian (SEA) Games Nguyen Huu Viet, Hoang Quy Phuoc, Pham Thi Hue, Vo Thai Nguyen, and Nguyen Van Ty.
Favourite swimmer Do Huy Long was absent from the training session.
Nguyen Manh Hung, general secretary of Viet Nam Aquatic Sports Association explained that “This is an important training session for the Asian Games in Guangzhou so we are only focusing on developing stamina.”
The team will return home on March 15 to compete in the National Short Course Swimming Championship which is also a test for the team. After the national tournament, the team will come back to China to continue their training until nearer Asian event.
Viet, who set the first new games record for Viet Nam by finishing first in 01:01.60 in the men’s 100m breaststroke, is expected to qualify for the final round of the men’s 100m breaststroke in Asian Games.
Vietnamese swimming made progress in the recent SEA Games in Laos, however, there is still a concern about its sustainable development, due to a lack of depth in the sport’s development.
Viet Nam won one gold, one silver and four bronze medals at the Laos’ Games, while the country only grabbed one gold and one bronze at Thailand’s SEA Games in 2007. Viet Nam took its first swimming medal in the SEA Games held in Malaysia nine years ago with the silver medal of Tran Xuan Hien in the breaststroke’s 100m.
Dinh Viet Hung, head of aquatic sports section of the National Sports Administration admitted that the selection of young swimmers hadn’t been good.
“Beginning this year, young talented swimmers nationwide will be gathered every summer at swimming centres for expert training, and then the best will be selected for the national team,” said Hung.
Chinese Guo Rui Shan, who coaches the national team said “The choice of initial swimmers is very important, it is a half of success. After that, we must have coaches with good professional knowledge”.
As part of plans to develop swimming in Viet Nam, domestic coaches and swimmers have been training abroad.
They have also invited foreign experts to provide training in the country, according to Hung.