FILIPINO-American gymnast Ava Verdeflor finished ninth in the Junior Asian Artistic Gymnastics Championship in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, good enough to qualify for this year’s Youth Olympic Games, according to the Gymnastics Association of the Philippines (GAP).
The 15-year-old Verdeflor, a Tarlac City native but based in Dallas, Texas, finished in the top 10 among 30 athletes from 22 countries in the overall standings of the artistic gymnastics event.
But GAP president Cynthia Carrion said Verdeflor broke the 30-point qualifying standard for the Youth Olympic Games, enough for the Filipina to earn a trip to the August 16-28 event.
“Ava scored 30.3 points in the overall execution. Ava is the lone gymnast for the Philippines yet she performed better than the others. We are proud of her,” Carrion said in a statement.
“Ava trained very hard for this Asian Championship. Now that she qualified for the Youth Olympics, she needs more support for her training and exposure in time for the event this coming August,” she added.
Once official, Verdeflor will join archers Luis Gabriel Moreno and Bianca Gotuaco, and golfers Princess Superal and Mia Legaspi in the Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing, China.
Verdeflor is a Philippine National Games champion who trained at the renowned World Olympic Gymnastics Academy (Woga).