POC hopes Carlos Yulo will compete in Asian Games

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  • MANILA The Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) has once again expressed its hope that Filipino

    gymnast Carlos Yulo will compete in the Asian Games in Hangzhou, China instead of the world
    championships in Belgium.

    The schedule of the two competitions overlap: the Asiad is scheduled for September 23 to October
    8, while the 2023 World Artistic Gymnastics Championships will take place from September 29 to
    October 8.

    The world championships is a qualifier for next year’s Olympic Games in Paris, while the Asian
    Games are not. Cynthia CarrionNorton, the president of the Gymnastics Association of the
    Philippines (GAP), has already announced that Yulo will prioritize the world championships in
    Antwerp to pursue his spot in the Olympics.

    But POC President Rep. Abraham “Bambol” Tolentino has asked GAP and Yulo to reconsider their
    position.

    “It’s going to be a winwin for Team Philippines in the Asian Games because all the gymnastics
    powerhouse countries will be competing in the world championships,” said Tolentino during last
    week’s POC general assembly in a restaurant in Paranaque City.

    “So Yulo has a strong opportunity of sweeping all the events in Hangzhou,” he added.

    Tolentino further pointed out that Yulo will amass great financial incentives if he wins a gold medal
    in Hangzhou. The government’s incentive program gifts P2 million for gold, P1 million for silver and
    P400,000 for bronze in the Asian Games.

    “I believe he can get all the medals, especially gold in the Asian Games. At the same time, the
    incentives he can get there are higher,” he said.

    Yulo is included in the “entry by name” list consisting of 426 athletes that the POC sent to the
    Hangzhou organizers. He has also earned a berth to Antwerp by virtue of his strong performance in
    previous International Gymnastics Federation world cup competitions.

    CarrionNorton, who was present in the POC general assembly, said the GAP will evaluate the
    suggestion of Tolentino.

    “All the members of the POC general assembly are begging for gymnastics to consider playing in the
    Asian Games,” Tolentino said. “We have already asked them to look for other Olympic qualifying
    events. Belgium is just the first Olympic qualifying event and there are many [qualifying events].”
    “Based on research, there are more other Olympic qualifiers by next year which is not that difficult
    so all POC members are begging for gymnastics to let Caloy play.”

    Other Olympic qualifiers in gymnastics include the 2024 Apparatus World Cup series from January
    to March and the 2024 continental championships in April and May.

    The Philippines is hoping to improve upon its performance from the 2018 Asian Games in Jakarta,
    where Filipina athletes won four gold medals. Aside from Yulo, the POC is pinning its hopes on
    world No. 3 pole vaulter EJ Obiena. (abscbn)

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