Carlos Yulo falls twice in nightmarish World Championships start, misses all-around final

Delfin Dioquino

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Carlos Yulo falls twice in nightmarish World Championships start, misses all-around final

BREATHE OUT. Carlos Yulo in action during the 2023 SEA Games.

Chalinee Thirasupa/Reuters

Carlos Yulo lands flat on his back in consecutive routines in the World Artistic Gymnastics Championships as he bungles his first crack at a Paris Olympics berth

MANILA, Philippines – Lightning struck twice for Carlos Yulo.

Yulo landed flat on his back in consecutive routines as he endured a nightmarish start in the World Artistic Gymnastics Championships in Antwerp, Belgium, on Saturday, September 30 (Sunday, October 1, Manila time).

In a stunning turn of events, the Filipino star failed to advance to the men’s individual all-around final after uncharacteristically scoring a zero in his pet event vault and totaling a lowly 67.765 points in the six apparatuses combined.

Yulo also bungled his first crack at a Paris Games berth.

Only the eight highest-ranked gymnasts – outside those who already booked their tickets to Paris – in the men’s all-around qualification in Antwerp will reach the Olympics.

Through the first four of the six subdivisions, Yulo placed 59th.

Yulo looked on his way to putting himself in prime position of securing one of the 24 all-around final seat after favorable results in the first four apparatuses.

He posted 14.666 in parallel bars, 14.6 in floor exercise, and respectable scores of 13.7 in horizontal bar and 13.233 in pommel horse.

But his all-around final bid unravelled when Yulo fell flat on his back during his dismount in the still rings, an accident that netted him a measly 11.566 points.

Perhaps still hurting from the fall, the 23-year-old suffered the same fate in his first vault – a surprising mishap in an event where he won gold in Kitakyushu, Japan, in 2021 and silver in Liverpool, United Kingdom, in 2022.

Although he bounced back with 13.533 in his second vault for an average of 6.766, the score of the first vault counts for the all-around tally.

The disappointing start in the world championships comes months after Yulo parted ways with Japanese coach Munehiro Kugimiya, who mentored him since he started training in Japan in 2016.

Yulo is accompanied by Filipino coach Aldrin Castaneda in Antwerp.

He can still earn a coveted Paris slot as he currently sits at third place in the floor exercise, with the top eight advancing to the final.

According to the International Gymnastics Federation, the highest-ranked eligible athlete in each apparatus in the world championships will obtain an Olympic berth.

Yulo is well capable of accomplishing that feat, considering he ruled the floor exercise in 2019 for his first world title.

Gymnasts from the last two subdivisions see action on Sunday as Yulo waits for his fate. –

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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.