Swimmer Nguyen Thi Anh Vien is Vietnam's 16th athlete to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics. (Photo: baodantoc.vnm)
Vien received an invitation from the International Swimming Federation (FINA) on July 2.
The talented athlete failed to qualify via performance after the cancellation and postponement of many competitions due to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 and 2021.
Recently, the National Age Groups Swimming Championship, which was for the first time accepted as an Olympic qualification tournament, was cancelled because of the pandemic. It was set to be held in May in HCM City and was the last chance for Vietnamese athletes to claim Olympic slots.
Vien will take part in the women’s 200m and 800m freestyle events, which she has recorded FINA personal bests of 2min 0.75sec and 8:48.65, respectively.
As a rule, every country that has one A-standard-qualified athlete will be given one more slot for an athlete of a different gender.
Previously, Nguyen Huy Hoang was the first Vietnamese swimmer to win a berth to Tokyo. He will compete in the men’s 800m and 1,500m freestyle categories.
Vien has been invited as she has reached B-standard in the 800m freestyle and 400m individual medley.
She took part in two Olympics in London’s 200m backstroke and 400m individual medley in 2012, and Rio de Janeiro’s 300m individual medley, 400m individual medley and 400m freestyle in 2016.
Vien is the most talented swimmer of Vietnam and has dominated in the national, regional tournaments and the SEA Games for many years.
At the 2020 national championship, she pocketed 14 in 17 golds for the Military team who topped the rankings.
At April's national short course championship in Hue, Vien earned 17 titles in both individual and team events.
Over the last five SEA Games, she has won 25 golds, nine silvers and two bronzes.
Internationally, she secured golds in the Asian Youth Games, Southeast Asian championship and Youth Olympics, along with silvers and bronzes from the World Cup, Asian Games and Asian championship.
Vietnam hopes to send 20 athletes to Tokyo. With Vien’s invitation, they have reached 16 in swimming, gymnastics, shooting, boxing, archery, badminton, rowing, weightlifting and taekwondo./.