Nguyễn Thị Thanh Thủy and Chu Đức Đạt will compete in the Grand Slam 2023 judo tournament for their Olympic Games target.
|Nguyễn Thị Thanh Thủy (above) will compete in the judo 2023 Grand Slam from December 2-3 in Tokyo, Japan. VNA/
HÀ NỘI — Nguyễn Thị Thanh Thủy will compete in the Grand Slam 2023 judo tournament seeking to win her place in the Olympic Games next summer, which would be her second Olympics.
Thủy has totally recovered from her injuries and left for Tokyo, Japan for the tournament.
“I have trained hard and ensured my best fitness for the Grand Slam,” said national and SEA Games champion Thủy.
“It will be a really tough competition and I will have to try my best for the highest result which will help me receive points for world ranking,” she said.
Thủy is currently Việt Nam’s strongest athlete in the women’s 52kg category.
She dominated the national tournament for many years before winning SEA Games titles two editions in a row, in 2022 in Việt Nam and 2023 in Cambodia.
She bore the most expectations among Việt Nam’s judo competitors at China’s 19th Asian Games. Unfortunately, days after the delegation’s departure for the Hangzhou Games, Thủy suffered a knee injury and could not join.
“My athletes have been in intensive training. The Grand Slam 2023 will provide high scores for winning athletes so Thủy might improve her ranking. We have high expectations of Thủy,” said Nguyễn Hữu An, general secretary of the Việt Nam Judo Federation.
|Chu Đức Đạt (right) seen in action during the final of the men’s 60kg category at the 32nd SEA Games. — VNA/
Thủy first took part in the Olympics in the Tokyo Games in 2021. She was defeated in the first round by Romanian Andreea Chitu, two-time world championship silver medallist. Before coming to Tokyo, Chitu won silver from the European championship.
“The Japanese Grand Slam will be my first event since my injury. I am really confident for fighting and will never give up,” said Thủy.
Apart from Thủy, Việt Nam will also send Chu Đức Đạt to take part in the men’s 60kg category in the Grand Slam.
Đạt is the two-time SEA Games defending champion. He won in the 31st and 32nd editions.
The Grand Slam, an Olympic qualification, will be held on December 2-3 with the participation of more than 500 athletes from 84 countries and regions.
The male fighters will take part in seven weight categories ranging from U60kg to over-100kg, while the females will compete in the U48kg to over-78kg classes.
Thủy will play Abe Uta of the host in Pool D in the first round, while Đạt receive a bye to the second round where he will take on Giorgi Sardalashvili of Georgia.
The Olympics’ qualifiers will end on June 23, 2024. The International Judo Federation will officially announce qualified athletes for the Paris Games on July 2.