With the SEA Games only two weeks away, Burma’s sports teams are making their final preparations.
Those on the Wushu team are tipped for gold. They’ve won over 60 gold medals in this discipline in international competitions over the last 20 years.
Some of the team members spoke to DVB about their hopes for SEA Games success.
“I am very confident because we are very evenly matched,” said Sanshou player Su Hlaing. “We have the advantage of playing at home and we have stepped up our training a great deal from previous years. As we are hosting the games, I am extremely determined to win.”
Wushu is a high-paced, full-contact sport that derived from Chinese martial arts. The name “Wushu” actually translates as “martial art”.
The sport has two disciplines: Sanshou, a combative style which can be fought barehanded or with short and long knives; and Taolu, which is a performance of patterns and maneuvers.
There are 23 medals up for grabs in each discipline and the Myanmar Wushu Federation said they are aiming for six gold medals from the tournaments.
“Our players are well prepared. We have incurred no injuries and are ready for the competition,” said chief coach and member of the Myanmar Wushu Federation, Khin Soe.
Taolu player and six-time gold medal winner, Kyaw Zin Lin, said Burma’s main competitors in the Taolu style events are Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia.
“These countries have dangerous teams,” he said.
The Wushu players have trained as much as they can and now, they say, they need the support of the public.
“The crowd’s support is essential, especially to combative players. If you climb into the ring and see only a few of your supporters it affects your confidence,” said Sanshou player Tun Tun Win.
“So we ask the fans to support us their best and we’ll fight our best.”
The Wushu competition takes place in Naypyidaw between 6 and 10 December.