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Vietnam Targets Gold at Beach Games
    2008-10-02 13:36:06     Xinhua

Vietnam expects to pocket some gold medals at the first Asian Beach Games which will be held from October 18 to 26 in Bali, Indonesia, the Vietnam News reported on Thursday.


Vietnam will send 70 athletes to compete in eight sports, hoping to win medals in pencak silat, sepak takraw and body building, according to Lam Quang Thanh, head of the delegation.


"Vietnamese pencak silat athletes are amongst the best in terms of skills, but final results also depend on referees," said coach Nguyen Xuan Hai.


In the bodybuilding events, former world champion Pham Van Mach is expected to take the podium for Vietnamese bodybuilders. Mach won two gold medals at the Asian Men's Bodybuilding Championship in July and will perform in the men's 55 kg class.


Sepak takraw, a game similar to volleyball but played with only the feet and a rattan ball, is also a strong point for Vietnamese, according to officials with the delegation.


Thanh said Vietnam will also compete in football, handball, swimming, marathon, surfing and wind surfing events, but they have set no medal goals for these events as they don't want the athletes to feel pressured.


Thanh said after the Games, Vietnam hope to develop beach sports in the country.



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