#YOGWatch: Former YOG athletes continue to amaze in August
The Youth Olympic Games (YOG) continue to provide a springboard to the international stage, with a succession of former YOG athletes clinching world and continental titles throughout August.
Brazilian sprint canoeist Isaquias Queiroz added to his growing medal collection at the 2019 ICF Canoe Sprint World Championships in Hungary. The 25-year-old – who competed at the YOG Singapore 2010 and went on to win two silver medals and a bronze at the Olympic Games Rio 2016 – clinched his sixth world title with gold in the C1 1,000m, while also adding a bronze in the C2 1,000m alongside compatriot Erlon Silva. Queiroz’s latest victory adds to the 2019 Pan-American gold he won in the C1 1,000m in July.
Australia’s Olympia Aldersey joined up with crew-mates Lucy Stephan, Sarah Hawe and Katrina Werry to win gold in the women’s coxless four at the 2019 World Rowing Championships in Austria. The 27-year-old – who won silver in the women’s pairs at the YOG Singapore 2010 – and her crew went undefeated throughout the regatta to claim the top honours and, by virtue of making the A-Final, also secured a place at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020. Aldersey – who was named Olympia after being born during the Opening Ceremony of the Olympic Games Barcelona 1992 – had previously won bronze medals in the double sculls at the 2014 and 2017 World Championships.
Sprint kayaker Stanislau Daineka, of Belarus, clinched his first world title as he partnered compatriot Dzmitry Natynchyk to gold in the K2 500m at the 2019 ICF Canoe Sprint World Championships in Hungary. The 21-year-old – a gold medallist in the head-to-head K1 sprint at the YOG Nanjing 2014 – also competed in the K4 500m alongside Natynchyk, Aliaksei Misiuchenka and Uladzislau Litvinau, with the quartet finishing seventh in the final.
Ukrainian diver Sofiya Lyskun has won her first major individual title on the international stage, less than a year after competing at the . The 17-year-old – who won silver in the 10m platform and bronze in the mixed team event in Buenos Aires – clinched gold in the 10m platform at the European Diving Championships, which were held on home soil in Kiev from 5 to 11 August. Lyskun scored 330.00 points from her five dives, giving her a comfortable victory over former European champion Celine van Duijn of the Netherlands (304.50).
Alexander Hendrickx and Nicolas De Kerpel
Alexander Hendrickx and Nicolas De Kerpel helped hosts Belgium win their first-ever European title after they beat Spain 5–0 in the final of the men's EuroHockey Championships. Held in Antwerp from 16 to 24 August, the tournament also saw Belgium qualify for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 by virtue of their victory, with Hendrickx finishing as the event’s joint top scorer with five goals, including the final strike in the final against Spain. De Kerpel also found the net in the 4-2 semi-final win over Germany, with the duo adding to the bronze medal they won at the YOG Singapore 2010 and their 2018 World Cup victory.
Zambian sprinter Sydney Siame was among a host of YOG athletes to compete at the 2019 African Games in Rabat (Morocco), from 6 to 30 August 2019, with the 21-year-old clinching gold in the men’s 200m. Siame – who was crowned 100m champion at the YOG Nanjing 2014 – secured his first senior title in a time of 20.35 seconds, edging Nigeria’s Divine Oduduru (20.54s) into second place.