Brave women’s team complete a gold medal hat-trick
The Vietnamese team started the 23rd SEA Games final with their strongest squad with goalkeeper Kieu Trinh, defenders Bich Hanh, Bui Thi Tuyet, Ngoc Anh, midfielders Mai Lan, Dao Thi Mien, Kim Hong, Van Thi Thanh, and forwards Kim Chi, Hong Tien and Le Thi Oanh.
After kick-off, the Vietnamese team launched attack after attack on the Myanmar defence. However, after 20 minutes, the Myanmar side regained the possession. The two teams played tit-for-tat. Seven minutes from half-time, the Vietnamese side dominated the game and created some scoring opportunities.
In the 38th minute, Dao Thi Mien tested Myanmar’s goalkeeper May Khin Ya Min with a powerful strike from outside the penalty box. However, the keeper dived to drove the Vietnamese player’s shot away. Three minutes later, Van Thi Thanh gave an excellent run from the left flank before curling the ball to the far corner. However, her strike was not strong enough to beat the Myanmar goalkeeper.
In the second half, the Vietnamese players continued to dominate the game. They created many scoring opportunities. Van Thi Thanh wasted a golden opportunity when she failed to net when unguarded goal was open before her. After Myanmar goalkeeper Ya Min failed to catch a right cross from the right flank by Kim Hong, the b ball fell onto Van Thi Thanh’s path. However, the midfielder’s attempt was cleared off the line by a Myanmar defender.
Minutes later, the Myanmar troubled to the Vietnamese defensive line with a counter attack. However, the Vietnamese side successfully prevented them from scoring.
The Chinese referee gave the Vietnamese side a spot kick after a hand ball by a Myanmar defender. Van Thi Thanh made no mistake in converting it into goal.
Going 1-0 down, the Myanmar team put a heavy pressure on the Vietnamese defence in order to seek an equaliser. However, the Vietnamese players exerted great efforts to defend the victory.
After the final whistle by the Chinese referee, all the Vietnamese players and coaches as well as a few spectators in Manila began to celebrate their victory. It was the third time, Vietnamese women's football has won a SEA Games gold medal.
Two years ago, the Vietnamese team beat Myanmar 2-1 with a golden goal by midfielder Mai Lan after drawing 1-1 in 90 minutes.
With the victory, the Vietnamese team revenged their 1-0 defeat in their 23rd SEA Games opener on November 22, 2005, and a defeat on penalty shootout at the first Southeast Asian championship in 2004.
Talking after the match, coach Mai Duc Chung said that he wanted to express his thanks to his players, who exerted brave efforts to win the gold medal.