A practice session of the national under-22's Vietnamese football team in preparation for the 2022 AFC U-23 Asian Cup qualification. (Photo: VFF)
NDO – The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the General Department of Sports and Physical Training have been setting out their plans to resume sports activities in the community and high-performance competitions effectively when the COVID-19 pandemic is fully controlled.
The General Department of Sports and Physical Training has worked with professional departments and representatives of sports to seek optimal plans towards the expected pilot of a number of national competitions in the current situation. Deputy General Director in charge of the General Department of Sports and Physical Training, Tran Duc Phan, said: “The priority of the sports industry is still to ensure the health and medical safety of athletes and coaches. However, we plan to pilot national tournaments when all activities are gradually entering the new normal. If nothing changes, they will be piloted in October. However, the sports sector has to consult localities that are expected to host the events and will then make specific decisions”.
Coaches and athletes from national teams have been training at specialised training facilities such as the National Sports Training Centres in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Da Nang and Can Tho. All of them are looking forward to returning to domestic tournaments soon because without competition, it is difficult for them to improve their techniques, tactics and skills.
To address the difficulties in the sector’s operation, a forum themed “The impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic - Drastic action in the culture, sports and tourism sector”, recently hosted by Minister Nguyen Van Hung, has received much specific advice. At the event, Deputy General Director of the General Department of Sports and Physical Training, Le Thi Hoang Yen, said that during the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and social distancing period, the people's demand for exercise and sports increased rapidly. Models of physical training and sports have become more diverse and the methods for organsing sports events have also changed to suit the epidemic situation, she added.
Regarding high-performance competition, many localities are waiting for specific guidance from the sports sector to make the best preparations for the tournaments, Deputy Director in charge of sports from the Ninh Binh provincial Department of Culture and Sports, Vu Hong Minh, said: “The department has organised closed training at the province’s sport training centre. However, we hope that the guidelines on holding high-performance sports tournaments in the new normal will be issued soon for best preparation. For example, Ninh Binh pays great attention to volleyball and the organisation of the national volleyball championship requires specific guidance.”
Based on the ideas, discussions and contributions related to the difficulties caused by the COVID-19 pandemic at the forum, the General Department of Sports and Physical Training has proposed the Government and the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism consider the resumption of sports events in the new normal. Accordingly, competitions will be held in localities that have controlled the pandemic under the model of a “safe bubble” for attendees and organisers. The sports sector has given opinions on considering and prioritising vaccination for all athletes, coaches and officials of national and local sports teams as well as participants to sports events to prepare for the 31st SEA Games and other domestic and international events in the new normal. The quarantine times and places, and vaccination for the delegations joining international competitions and training are being proposed by the General Department of Physical Training and Sports to management agencies towards a specific and workable mechanism for the sector.
Recently, some localities have allowed the resumption of sports activities such as Ha Long, Cam Pha, Mong Cai and Uong Bi Cities in Quang Ninh Province. Bac Giang Province’s Sports Training Centre Chu Viet Bac said: “The centre has welcomed athletes back to practice. They are very careful and avoiding crowded places. I hope national tournaments will return soon at the province’s gymnasiums”.
Translated by NDO
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