As Carlos Yulo electrifies, PH notches best showing in Asian championships

Delfin Dioquino

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As Carlos Yulo electrifies, PH notches best showing in Asian championships

GOLDEN. Carlos Yulo dominates in the 2023 Asian Artistic Gymnastics Championships in Singapore.

Linee Yeo/Asian Artistic Gymnastics Championships

The Philippines finishes as the second-best performing nation in the Asian Artistic Gymnastics Championships behind an electric campaign by Carlos Yulo and promising performances from Emma Malabuyo and Aleah Finnegan

MANILA, Philippines – It was not too long ago when the Philippines went without a medal in the Asian Artistic Gymnastics Championships.

Times have changed.

For the second straight edition, the Philippines emerged as the second-best performing nation in the senior level of the Asian championships in Singapore that ended on Sunday, June 18, behind an electric run by Carlos Yulo.

Yulo showed the way as the Philippines bagged three golds, two silvers, and three bronzes for a total of eight medals, finishing behind mighty China (eight golds, two silvers, three bronzes) in the medal tally.

It proved to be in stark contrast to the Philippines’ campaign four years ago in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, where the country failed to win a single medal.

The Philippines has turned its fortunes around en route to its finest showing in the Asian championships, largely thanks to Yulo, who dominated in Singapore as the best-performing male gymnast.

Yulo clinched golds in parallel bars, floor exercise, and vault, silver in individual all-around, and bronze in horizontal bar to eclipse his three-gold, one-silver loot in the Doha, Qatar edition in 2022.

The 23-year-old won a medal in all events except the still rings, where he narrowly missed out on a podium spot after finishing fourth in the final, and pommel horse, the apparatus that is largely considered his Achilles heel.

But it was not just Yulo who delivered for the Philippines as female gymnasts Aleah Finnegan and Emma Malabuyo contributed to the medal haul.

Malabuyo, who is now representing the Philippines after flying the United States’ colors in past years, claimed the silver in floor exercise.

Finnegan, meanwhile, earned a pair of bronzes in vault and balance beam as the Filipinas broke through after going empty-handed in previous editions of the Asian championships.

More importantly, Yulo and Finnegan, together with Kylee Kvamme, qualified for the World Artistic Gymnastics Championships in Antwerp, Belgium, in Singapore as they look to punch their tickets to the 2024 Paris Games.

Yulo eyes a second straight Olympic appearance after representing the country in the Tokyo Games, while Finnegan and Kvamme aim to become the first Filipina gymnasts to compete in the Olympics since 1964. –

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Delfin Dioquino

Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.