|Dang Thu Huyen, the talented hitter of the Vietinbank club
The captain aged just 16
In 2018, Vietnamese volleyball witnessed a strong expertise breakthrough made by setter Dang Thu Huyen. Despite her young age of 16, the hitter of the Vietinbank club was appointed as the captain of Vietnam’s U19 women’s volleyball team at the Asian U19 Championship.
Two years earlier, the 1.75m tall player from Hanoi’s Thuong Tin district had created a real “fever” thanks to her smart playstyle and pure beauty on her professional debut.
Dang Thu Huyen started practising volleyball at the age of 11. After only one year, she was called up to the youth team of the LienVietPostBank club to compete in the national championship.
At the age of 14, Huyen joined her Vietnam U19 teammates to win the silver medal at the Southeast Asian U19 Championship and claim fourth place in the 2016 Asian U19 Championship, before attending the 2017 VTV Cup tournament as a member of Vietnam’s youth team.
Particularly, although she was the youngest in the Vietnamese team at the 2018 Asian U19 Championship, Huyen always stood out and fought bravely whenever featured on the court, with a captain’s armband.
Many people once advised Huyen to pursue a job as a model or set a foothold in Vietnamese showbiz, but the 2002-born girl still affirmed: “Playing volleyball is a dream since my childhood, and thus far, as a young player, I am always self-aware of having to learn from the seniors not only in expertise but also in the way of life in order to perfect myself”.
“I play volleyball, not join in a beauty pageant”
2018 also marked a sparkling milestone for Dang Thi Kim Thanh, as the beautiful volleyballer from Long An province not only succeeded at the club level, but also shined brightly in the national team.
In particular, at the VTV International Women’s Volleyball Cup last August, Dang Thi Kim Thanh overcame many heavyweights to be crowned Miss VTV Cup, a title presented to the most beautiful player of the competition.
Kim Thanh applied for trainer Luong Nguyen Ngoc Hien’s volleyball class for the gifted from an early stage. When she reached the age of 14, she was officially summoned to the Vietnam youth team.
Entering her second year playing for the first team of the VTV Binh Dien Long An club, Kim Thanh, possessing an impressive height of 1.78m, was able to play well in both the “hitter” and “setter” positions, and is one of the best volleyball passers of Vietnam’s women’s volleyball at present.
That miss beauty is so strange. She rarely does makeup. The rusticity and cuteness of Kim Thanh have made her always sociable. Thanh wants everyone to remember her as an excellent athlete, not by the title of beauty. “Please call me athlete Kim Thanh, I play sports but do not want join a beauty contest,” Thanh shared.
With age comes wisdom
It seemed to everyone that she had turned to training work, but a few months ago, the beautiful passer of the Vietinbank club, Pham Kim Hue, suddenly rushed back into practising volleyball again.
To prepare for her return, Kim Hue has spent a few hours on fitness exercises every day. As an athlete with amazing qualities, the former miss beauty of Vietnamese volleyball has overcome difficulties to catch up with the high training intensity.
“Generally speaking, I have nothing to worry about, I am just a little upset as many people think that I take the place of young athletes”. But Hue’s return holds many meanings, not merely playing on the field.
“Never before has the team fallen into a shortage of forces as at present, with 5-6 key pillars being unable to play due to various reasons (pregnancy, injury, moving to other clubs). From the beginning of the year, I was determined to focus on the training career, but encouraged by the club leaders and supported by my family, I have decided to return to help the club,” explained Hue.
In addition to her passion and love for volleyball, it is also a sense of responsibility of one of the monuments of Vietnamese volleyball.