Brazil will have a representative in the semifinals of the 100 meters (m) dash of the Tokyo Olympics (Japan). This Saturday (31), Paulo André Camilo de Oliveira made the third best time of the sixth heat of the qualifiers of the noblest competition in athletics, with 10s17. The Brazilian’s best personal mark is 10s02. On Sunday (1st), from 7:15 am (Brasilia time), the 22-year-old from São Paulo, based in Espírito Santo, will dispute a place in the final, which will be on the same day, at 9:05 pm, again at the Olympic Stadium in the Japanese capital.
Paulo André’s drums were won by the South African Akani Simbine, with 10.08. Overall, the Brazilian scored the 26th best mark. Canadian André de Grasse, who won bronze in the 100m at the Rio de Janeiro Games five years ago, was the fastest in the qualifying round, with 9.91.
“I had a good start, but a bad acceleration, they ran away a little, but I calmed down and managed to follow and attack at the end and qualify. I entered to take a test for time, but in the middle of it I had to be patient to change the strategy and I did it. Now I have to mentally work on my recovery to reach the semifinals well”, said the sprinter, in a statement issued by the Brazilian Athletics Confederation (CBAt).
Paulo André is the son of former sprinter Carlos José Camilo de Oliveira, who represented Brazil in international competitions and lost the Olympics in Los Angeles (United States), in 1984, because of an injury. Carlos is also his son’s coach, but he was not invited to join the Brazilian team’s technical committee – which generated a public complaint by the athlete on Instagram at the time.
“I won’t deny that I’m missing it, but that’s no excuse and I’m in touch with him at all times. There’s internet for us to stay close”, commented Paulo André, who wears the name “Camilo” on his chest, along with the number, in honor of his father.
Two other Brazilians competed for places in the 100m semifinals, but did not advance in the qualifiers. Rodrigo Nascimento, from Santa Catarina, took sixth place in the seventh heat, with 10s24. Felipe Bardi from São Paulo was fifth in the second series, with 10s26.
Also this Saturday, Samory Uiki from Rio Grande do Sul and Alexsandro Melo from Paraná were unable to qualify for the long jump final. Samory jumped 7.88m and was 16th overall, while Alexsandro reached 6.95m and finished the tie in 29th. The latter, however, competes again on Sunday, this time in the triple jump, a race in which he is an expert.
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