A night of highs and lows in the Olympic Stadium for YOG stars
Youth Olympic Games (YOG) champion Luguelin Santos is on fire over at the Olympic Stadium, easily qualifying for the 400m final last night with a time of 44.78 seconds and leaving a trail of athletes in his wake.
The 19-year old Dominican beat favourite Kevin Borlée and will take on other running greats tonight. The track wasn’t as sweet for Qatar’s Hamza Driouch, 17, after he came 11th in the men’s 1,500m semi-final. Hamza - who was in the lead pack until the last 200m - lost his impressive speed after stumbling when he collided with another runner. “I’m not happy with the last stretch of the race,” said a clearly disappointed Hamza.
But the one everyone was waiting for last night had to be Youth Olympic Games Ambassador and defending Olympic 100m champion Usain Bolt. In one of the most highly anticipated nights of sport, the Jamaican superstar went on to beat his own Olympic record in the men’s 100m final with a time of 9.63 seconds. “I'm still the number one, I'm still the best. I'm just happy," he said after the race, putting all those who doubted him to shame.
Elsewhere, out on the hockey pitch, Pakistani Youth Olympic Games players Muhammad Rizwan and Syed Kashif Shah helped their team to a 5-4 win over South Africa. Pakistan will go on to play Australia on Tuesday. Over at the ExCel, Youth Olympian Alex Massialas helped team USA defeat France to make it into the men’s team foil semi-finals only to lose out to eventual winners, Italy, and then Germany in the bronze medal match, to finish fourth. Alex, 18, who will attend top US college Stanford later this year, is considered a rising star in the fencing world and he counts his YOG experience as integral to his success. “Singapore was a great experience and really helped me,” he told us. “The team event there was a little bit different but it was the same kind of atmosphere and energy.”
And with the energy in the YOG camp still positive, we’re sure we will be bringing you news of more YOG medals soon!
Story by Iram Sarwar, YOG Reporter