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August 3, 2021

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Liu leads 1-2 in rings

Liu Yang led a China one-two in the men’s gymnastics rings event final at the Tokyo Olympics yesterday, claiming a slim victory over compatriot Hao You.

Greece’s Eleftherios Petrounias, winner of the ring gold at the 2016 Rio Games, took the bronze.

Liu’s clinical performance and flawless dismount earned him a score of 15.500, a sliver over Hao’s 15.300 and Petrounias’s 15.200.

It marks the first time China has topped the rings podium since going one-two at the 2008 Beijing Games.

Liu, 26, placed second to qualify for the final. With an unparalleled execution score of 9.000 points for his movements, he secured the first gymnastics gold for China at these Games.

“My goal was to become an Olympic champion since I was a child. I have trained for 20 years, and I was very eager to become a champion. There were times when I wanted to give up, and times when I didn’t want to practice, and then there were injuries or other factors. But in the end I still stuck to it, and then had this satisfactory result,” Liu said.

South Korea’s Shin Jea-hwan won the men’s vault while American Jade Carey took gold in the floor exercise but once again it was Simone Biles stealing the spotlight by confirming she will return to compete in the balance beam final.

Not seen in competition since last Tuesday when she abruptly dropped out of the team event after one vault, citing mental health issues, Biles will return today for the beam final to ensure a blockbuster finish to the gymnastics schedule.


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