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2021 SEA Games

Pegged to win four SEAG golds, Yulo not letting pressure get best of him

Caloy Yulo will focus on his strengths when he kicks off his campaign Friday in the men’s artistic gymnastics competition – the first of four golds Gymnastics Association of the Philippines president Cynthia Carrion-Norton predicts the Tokyo Olympics veteran will win in the 31st Southeast Asian Games in Hanoi, Vietnam.

“I’m confident he (Yulo) will win at least a minimum of four gold medals,” Carrion-Norton said.

“Everybody’s afraid and watching Caloy in training here.”

But the reigning men’s vault world champion downplayed all the hype. “I’m not thinking that they (competition) are focusing on me because there are so many good gymnasts here, too. At the same time, I’m not thinking that I’m the best here,” Yulo, who won two golds and five silver medals at the last 2019 SEA Games, said.

“Last time, I was no. 1, but that’s already a thing of the past.

“I’ll just focus on my strength and what I can do in the competition,” he added. The 22-year-old Tokyo Olympics veteran begins his campaign in the men’s all-around event at 10 a.m. at the Quan Ngura Sports Palace here.

Yulo will compete against 12 other gymnasts from five countries – two from Malaysia, one each from Indonesia and Thailand, two from Singapore, and four from host Vietnam – in the artistic gymnastics men’s all-around qualifying round.

He will also go up against compatriots Jan Gwynn Timbang and Juancho Miguel Besana Eserio.

The World Championship silver medalist in the parallel bar will also take part in the pommel horse, rings, and floor exercise on May 15, before plunging into action in the high bar, parallel bar, and vault on May 16.

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Yulo arrived in Hanoi prior to the opening ceremony together with Japanese coach Munehiro Kugimiya and immediately buckled down to hard training.

“Heavy training for me, then I rested my tired body for recovery,” he said.

The women’s artistic women’s individual event will take place on May 14.

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