VietNamNet Bridge – Tran The Thuong won the first gold medal for Vietnam at the ongoing third World Vovinam (Vietnamese martial arts) Championships in France on July 5.
In the Ngu Mon Quyen (Five Gate Form) performance event, he gained 281 points to finish first.
The silver and bronze medals went to martial artists from Senegal and Russia.
In the men’s U64kg combat event, Ho Minh Tam faced fierce competition from Belgian rival Melon Floria, but managed to defeat him 3-0 to enter the quarter-finals. In that event Tam easily thrashed Mahdi to advance to the next stage.
In the women’s 51kg combat event, Tran Khanh Trang fought hard to thrash host, Pigeau Caroline 4-0 to proceed to the final.
World defending champion in the men’s 60kg, Nguyen Duy Khanh narrowly beat Algeria’s Din Adel with a last-minute accurate punch to reach to the final stage.
This is the first time the World Vovinam Championship has been held outside Vietnam and it has attracted martial artists from more than 20 countries.
Vietnamese Ambassador to France Duong Chi Dung highlighted this 2013 tournament as a significant event marking 75 years of Vovinam’s development and 40 years since the martial art was introduced abroad.
Ambassador Dung presented a certificate of merit to Francis Didier, Deputy Chairman of the World Vovinam Federation (WVVF), for his active contributions to strengthening cultural diplomacy between Vietnam and France.
There are more than 800 Vovinam clubs with nearly 15,000 members in France.
Vovinam first appeared in France 40 years ago and rapidly expanded to other European and African nations.