Tokyo—Carlos Yulo came through with the highest execution and second-best score in the men’s vault finals, but fell short in the totals, missing the bronze medal by a hairline in the Summer Olympic Games at the Ariake Gymnastics Centre here on Monday.
Yulo’s 14.866 score in his second vault attempt called Dragulescu, a handspring double front move with half turn, was even better than the 14.833 of eventual gold medalist Shin Jeahwan (total 14.783) of Korea.
But the Filipino gymnast’s 14.566 in the first vault, where he was penalized 0.1 for a fault, dragged his total score to 14.716 at fourth place.
This was just a whisker short of the 14.733 total of bronze medalist Artur Davtan of Armenia, who had scores of 14.800 and 14.666.
“Wala na po tayo magagawa doon. Sobrang lapit ko na po. May chance po na makakuha ng medal kung hindi po ako lumagpas,” said Yulo, referring to his first vault, where his right leg went outside of the pad during landing. (See related story on C1 – Editors)
“Nakakahinayang lang po kasi ang ganda ng second vault ko,” added the 21-year-old Yulo, whose 9.066 was the tournament’s highest execution score.
Meanwhile, boxer Nesthy Petecio shoots for the Philippines’ second gold medal when she battles Japan’s Sena Irie in the women’s featherweight finals at 12:05 p.m. at the Kokugikan Arena.
Earlier at 10:15 a.m. (Philippine time), Carlo Paalam takes on an equally daunting challenge as he faces Olympic and world champion Shakhobidin Zoirov of Uzbekistan in the men’s flyweight quarterfinals, hoping to land the country’s third boxing medal and the fourth overall.
Russian Denos Abliazin finished runner-up to the Korean with a total of 14.783. The Korean and the Russian posted matching average scores of 14.783 in a tie that was broken by the gymnast with the higher score of the two vaults before the average for the final score, giving the gold to Shin.
Davtyan, who earned an average of 14.733, was also the winner of a tie-break with Yulo.
Russian Nikita Nagornny, Yulo’s main rival in the floor exercise, only placed fifth with 14.716.
Turkey’s Adem Asil had the best single score of 15.266 in the first vault, but a 13.633 in his second had him slipping to no. 6.
Disappointed by his failure to win a medal in these games, Yulo -- who was hoping to redeem himself in the vault after failing to advance to the finals of his favorite men’s floor exercise -- however vowed to bounce back stronger.
“Gusto kong magpalakas. Feeling ko po ay may igagaling pa ako,” said Yulo, who is competing in the All-Japan Seniors next month.
“Hindi po muna ako makakauwi sa Pilipinas dahil may competition po ako next month. Gusto ko na nga pong bumawi,” Yulo said.
Meanwhile, the Tokyo heat got the better of Kristina Marie Knott as she bowed out from the women’s 200-meter run at the National Stadium.
The 25-year-old Knott clocked 23.80 seconds and placed last among five competitors in Heat 7 topped by American Jenna Prandini, who clocked 22.56. When all the times from the 41 runners were collated, the Fil-American Knott finished 37th, out of the magic semifinal circle.
“This is her first Olympic Games. She could have been battling a lot of things. It could have been the extreme heat. It could have been nerves. I’m not trying to pinpoint an excuse or give a set of answers. It was an awful performance. It wasn’t what we expected. But people need to realize this is the world stage,” said Knott’s coach Roshaan Griffin.
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