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Caloy Yulo eyes redemption in vault final

Caloy Yulo can still get a medal in Tokyo. Jade Moya (file photo)
By Dugout Philippines

TOKYO—Carlos Yulo vies in the men’s vault finals of artistic gymnastics on Monday night hoping to redeem himself from a disappointing performance in floor exercise more than a week ago.

Yulo scored 14.733 points to land in sixth place in the vault and be with the top eight participants who advanced to the finals. Unfortunately for Yulo, he landed in 44th place out of 64 competitors in his pet floor exercise.

The 2019 floor exercise world champion also fared poorly in rings (24th), parallel bars (55th), horizontal bar (63rd), and pommel horse (69th).

“Hopefully he is more relaxed this time,” Gymnastics Association of the Philippines President Cynthia Carrion Norton said on Sunday. “But watching all the great gymnasts from all over the world could be intimidating.”

South Korea’s Shin Jeahwan is marching to the finals set at close to 7 p.m. (Tokyo time, 6 p.m., Philippine Time) as the top qualifier with 14.866 points, followed by Armenia’s Artur Davytan with 14.866 and Russian Olympic Committee top bet Nikita Nagorny with 14.783.

Nagorny added the Tokyo Olympics men’s team gold medal to the ROC’s collection earlier last week.

Rounding out the eight qualifiers were Brazil’s Caiou Sauza (14.700), Turkey’s Ahmet Onder (14.466), Hongkong’s Shek Wai Hung (14.274), and Spain’s Nicolau Mir (14.133).

Carrion Norton said Yulo’s coach Munehiro Kugimiya picked Shin and Onder as favorites in the event but hinted Yulo could have a shot at a medal.

“According to Coach Mune [Kugimiya ], the two top vault athletes are Korea and Turkey with the difficulty of 6.02,” Carrion Norton said. “Caloy’s difficulty is 5.60. If Shin and Onder earn deductions and Caloy makes a perfect score, we have a good chance.”

Carrion Norton didn’t say if Yulo was bitten by the so-called “twisties,” which struck even the sensational Simone Biles of the US.

The Associated Press described in a report “twisties” as the sudden inability for a gymnast to make the requisite spins—or sometimes any spins—for a particular maneuver.

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