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Filipino gymnast Carlos Yulo keeps his gold medal dream alive in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics after making it through the final round of the vault exercise in the men's all-around and apparatus qualification event at the Ariake Gymnastics Centre on Saturday (July 24).
Yulo, the 2019 SEA Games silver medalist on vault, came through on the vault exercise with a final tally of 14.712, enough to finish in sixth place and advance to the finale, where only eight athletes get to compete for a podium spot.
He pulled off a Kasamatsu double full on his first vault for a score of 14.766 built on a 9.166 execution score, before completing a Dragulescu in the second one which received a 9.058 execution score.
However, the Golden Boy of Philippine gymnastics struggled in five other events where he bowed out of contention, which include the rings, parallel bars, horizontal bar, pommel horse, and floor exercise – his pet event.
Yulo, the world champion in the floor exercise, struggled early on in his routine as he fumbled a landing on his first pass and even almost stumbled on the second.
This dealt a huge blow on his execution as he finished with a dismal 13.566 points to end up at 44th place out of 64 participants.
In the other events, Yulo settled with a score of 14.000 in the rings, 13.4666 in the parallel bars, 12.300 in the horizontal bar, and 11.833 in the pommel horse.
As the dust settled, the 2019 SEA Games all-around champion wound up at 44th overall, failing to get into the top 24 of the all-around standings.
Yulo will return to action on August 2 for the vault final.
Ohmer Bautista is a sports journalist who has covered local and international sporting events in the Philippines. The views expressed are his own.