Minor injuries sustained in the final weeks of training affected Filipino gymnasts Miguel Besana and Ace de Leon in their individual events in the 19th Asian Games in Huangzhou, China.
Besana and De Leon tried their best while nursing foot injuries but couldn’t get going as they bowed out in the men’s vault and floor exercise at the Huanglong Sports Centre Gymnasium on Sunday.
“Our boys did their jobs despite their injuries,” said Gymnastics Association of the Philippines Deputy Secretary-General Rowena Bautista.
“But we still have other gymnasts who will compete here,” added Bautista, speaking on behalf of GAP head Cynthia Carrion-Norton who is with star gymnast Caloy Yulo in the Artistic Gymnastics World Championships in Antwerp, Belgium.
Yulo, a two-time world champion, six-time Asian Championships winner and nine-time gold medalist in the SEA Games, skipped the Asian Games for the world event, which serves as a qualifier for next year’s Paris Olympics.
Besana, gold medalist in the vault and silver medalist in the all-around team in the 2023 Cambodia SEA Games, couldn’t find the groove and finished 10th (14.044) in his favorite vault at the Huanglong Sports Centre Gymnasium.
De Leon, silver winner in Cambodia in the team all-around, wound up 13th in the vault with 13.783. In the floor exercise, he came in 23rd with a score of 13.000. Only the top eight in each apparatus made it to the finals on Wednesday.
Three female gymnasts were seeing action as of presstime Monday also seeking to advance to the finals. They are Kursten Rogue Lopez in floor, vault, uneven bars and balance beam; Ancilla Manzano in floor and balance beam; and Samantha Ann Macasu in uneven bars.
“We will keep trying here,” added Bautista, still counting on John Ivan Cruz, Jhon Romeo Santillan, Jan Timbang, Lucia Gutierrez, Emma Malabuyo, Breanna Labadan and Daniela dela Pisa in the days ahead.