More gold, but Laos ranking stays the same

Posted by samakomlao Thursday, December 17, 2009

Despite gaining seven more gold medals yesterday, Laos remains at seventh place in the medal standings while Vietnam and Thailand are in a head to head battle for top honours.

The battle for medals will end this morning, with the afternoon set aside for preparations for the 25th SEA Games closing ceremony at the National Stadium.

The ceremony will begin at 5:10pm with musical entertainment, followed by a programme of performances and displays.

The first gold medals for Laos yesterday came in the morning thanks to experienced boxers in the muay Lao (kick boxing) ring with their haul of three gold medals in wushu sanshou at Lao-ITECC.

Some of the tactics used in muay Lao are very similar to those employed in wushu sanshou, which gave Laos the edge and brought them resounding success on home soil.

To date, the wushu team has taken five gold, two silver and four bronze medals. After the five muay Lao gold medals they earned earlier in the week, the team has become the most successful in Laos at the games.

The first gold of the day for Laos was a victory by Khamla Souphaphone after he easily beat Phan Van Hau of Vietnam in the men's 52kg boxing event. Khamla won the silver medal at the last SEA Games in 2007 in Thailand .

Khamla was the best boxer in the muay Lao ring with 70 fights to his credit. Muay Lao fans know him as Anantaxay Sor-souphaphone.

“This gold medal is a good token for me to welcome in the New Year of 2010 and also a wonderful reward after a long year of hard training,” Khamla said.

“I have to thank all of my supporters around the country, especially the people of my hometown of Nahai village in Hadxaifong district, Vientiane , for cheering me on to victory today.”

More gold medals in wushu followed from 2006 Asian Games silver medallist Phoxay Aphailath in the men's 56kg and Bouapha Valasith in the men's 60kg category.

Other gold medals taken by Lao athletes yesterday included one in the men's under 120kg judo event for Khemkham Kommanivong, one in the boxing ring for Vilasak Khouandy in the men's 64kg light welterweight, one in men's surface fin swimming 200m for Bounthanom Vongphachanh, and another in the men's pencak silat class I under 90kg for Pheumthavy Vongphackdy.

By Sisay Vilaysack

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