AN eventful week for Philippine gymnastics finished at another high on Saturday after Carlos Edriel Yulo bagged the country’s first-ever world artistic gymnastics gold at the 2019 World Artistic Gymnastics Championships in Stuttgart, Germany.
The gold was in addition to Mr. Yulo qualifying for the Olympic Games in Tokyo next year which he was able to accomplish in the same tournament on Oct. 8 after making the cut in the all-around performances, hence, handing a double celebration for Philippine gymnastics.
Nineteen-year-old Yulo bagged gold in the floor exercise final with a score of 15.300, besting Artem Dolgopyat (15.200) of Israel, who finished second, and Ruoteng Xiao (14.933) of China for bronze.
All-around, Mr. Yulo wound up at 10th in the competition.
The Filipino gymnast said after that he was very happy over winning gold for the Philippines and that he hopes more people would pick up the sport and enjoy it.
“I’m super happy. I didn’t expect to win this medal. I’m crying on the inside,” Mr. Yulo was quoted as saying by the International Gymnastics Federation Web site.
“There are not a lot of other gymnasts [in the Philippines]. I want them to come to our gym, and try gymnastics, because Filipinos, they like basketball, but we’re small. They should try gymnastics, it’s more fun,” he added.
After a very successful foray in Stuttgart, Japan-based Yulo now focuses his attention on the 30th Southeast Asian Games which the country is hosting from Nov. 30 to Dec. 11.
Mr. Yulo is the second Filipino to qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Games after pole-vaulter EJ Obiena. — Michael Angelo S. Murillo