05/30/2006 — 11:41(GMT+7)

Ha Noi (VNA) – Vietnamese players had a string of bad luck on May 28 when they all lost in the three quarter-final matches of the 120,000 USD Bingo Bonanza Philippines Badminton Open.

Nonetheless, Viet Nam's top player Nguyen Tien Minh is expected to improve his world ranking by 26 steps to 38th after reaching the quarters in the Philippines.

Losing lots of energy in the three-set win over 14th world ranked Kuan Beng-hong last Saturday, No 9 seed Tien Minh played out of form against his Malaysian rival Hashim Roslin, who is 45 ranks behind on the world table.

Roslin, who is 109 world ranked, capitalised on his 15-year experience to overwhelm Minh's weakened strength in two straight sets. The Malaysian won 21-9, 21-15.

Tran Thanh Hai, although injured, still tried his best in two doubles matches in hope of improving his points to qualify for the world championship.

Hai and Nguyen Quang Minh, 62nd world ranked seeded No 5 in men's doubles, were defeated by Indonesian duo Uki Kasah Yoga and Suryatama Yonathan in two sets, losing 21-14, 21-15.

Hai played with less strength in the mixed doubles later on Sunday when he paired up with women's Top Player Championship titlist Le Ngoc Nguyen Nhung.

Hai and Nhung were trounced 21-10; 21-11 by Muhamad Rizal and Gresya Polii of Indonesia.

Tien Minh and Quang Minh will represent Viet Nam in the Singapore Open later this week.-Enditem



An additional 19,000 scholarships will be presented to students in Asia-Pacific countries including Vietnam over the next five years, announced the Australian Embassy in Hanoi on May 29.

The Australian scholarship scheme has been in Vietnam for quite a long time, prioritising human resource development for the country, said Australian Ambassador Bill Tweddell. He said that this five-year scholarship programme reflects the strong belief of the Australian government in education-based cooperative relationships with regional countries.

"Vietnam is home to numerous outstanding students, that is why we always encourage and create favourable conditions for the students to earn scholarships," he further said.

At present, Vietnam ranks third among the largest beneficiaries of the Australian government's scholarship programme, which includes the Australian Leadership Awards, the Australian Development Scholarship and the Endeavour Award Programme. All Vietnamese students are eligible to apply for these scholarships for any undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate coursework, research programmes, or vocational training programmes. (VNA)

Vietnamese authorities stripped a police major of his rank Tuesday for organizing betting on a cockfight in his house.


Major Nguyen Hoang Son, 42, a Ho Chi Minh City traffic inspector, was caught red-handed on 19th May playing the bookie in district 9.

He owns a 2,000 sq.m parking lot which he also uses as a cockfight arena.

The police which found 59 gamblers, 19 fighting cocks, and seized VND80 million (US$5,000) and $2,000 in cash, 35 mobile phones, 29 motorbikes, and two cars, has sought warrants to prosecute Son and 24 others involved in the betting.

The city police force had earlier suspended Son.

Cockfights and any other activity held for gambling is illegal in Vietnam.

Reported by Dam Huy – Translated by Hoang Bao

May 31, 2006

The northern-4-flap dress is Vietnam's first "ao dai", only worn on the occasion of the Tet festival. The brown dress with the two fore-flaps tied together and let dangling matches with satin trousers and silk belts. Then the 4 flap dress has been modified into a 3-flap one: the collar being 2 cm high, the sleeves wrapping tightly to the wrists, breast and waist of main flaps, there is also a minor flap reaching down to the fringe. Buttons are made of plaited cloth and buttoned on the side. The collar is turned up obliquely to let appear three color ( or 7 colors ) of the dress. The outermost layer is of brown silk or a kind of black gauze, followed by light yellow, pink, lemon green, and sky-blue… multicolored ones…., attractive yet decent, discrete and harmonious…

Following the Europeanization wave in 1935, Lemur Nguyen Cat Tuong's "modern ao dai" made its apparition. It had puffed out shoulders, cuffed sleeves, a round collar cut breast-deep and laced, a corrugated fringe made of joined cloth of different colors and gaudily laced.

During the the 1939-1945 period there was a conflict on a esthetic concept, resulting in the restoration of the traditional ao dai. Young girls' collar was from 4 cm to 7 cm high, the roundness of which was ensured by a stipt starching, the flaps were of a broad width and of a 1958 and the beginning of 1959, Madam Ngo Dinh Nhu's low-necked, decollete ao dai was launched.

At the beginning of 1971, the raglan-sleeve ao dai renovated by Mrs. Tuyet Mai overcame the wrinkling short comings at the shoulders and the armpits.

From the early 1970's to 1975 it was the period at mini and hippy ao dai widely worn with tights and flares until 1989. The first ao dai beauty contest was restored under the communist regime since 1975 and the traditional ao dai returned to its suave beauty of old times. All young ladies were encouraged to wear the white ao dai to school which has been banned since 1975 after the falling of Sai Gon. All such contests as school beauty, sports beauty has been organized everywhere in the country, ao dai is the main category in these contests. Now only the Tien Phong Newspaper beauty contest is considered the official national contest and who is crowned from this contest become the national beauty queen and she will represent the country in all diplomatic occasions. This contest has been official started in 1992 and repeated every two year sine then ( 1994, 1996, 1998).

The year 1995 was the crowing year for the national ao dai. Truong Quynh Mai's ao dai was chosen the most beautiful national apparel in Tokyo… The 1995 renovated ao dai model suits well modern times, and is more beautiful at it's tightened at the breast, waist and back, its collar evenly circling round from 4 cm to 7 cm high, the sleeves just tighten the arms.

Velvet ao dai, embroidered, painted and printed with flower pattern have created even more exquisite beauty features allowing Vietnam's ao dai to take off ever higher.