SEA Games: Rachel Yeoh adds surprise 2nd gold in balance beam

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Malaysia gymnast Rachel Yeoh in action during the women's balance beam final at the Hanoi SEA Games.
Malaysia gymnast Rachel Yeoh in action during the women's balance beam final at the Hanoi SEA Games. (PHOTO: Reuters/Chalinee Thirasupa)

Gymnast Rachel Yeoh added a surprise second SEA Games gold medal in the women's balance beam event at the Quan Ngua Sports Palace in Hanoi on Monday (16 May), to go with her uneven bars triumph on Sunday.

The Star reported that the 23-year-old was facing a strong field that included hot favourite Aleah Finnegan of the Philippines, but scored 12.567 points to edge out the Filipino (12.367 points) to gold. Vietnam's Pham Nhu Phuong (12.167 points) earned the bronze.

"I have now proven to everyone that I can deliver titles in prestigious events. All the hard work and sacrifices have been worth it," Yeoh said.

Her unexpected two-gold feat brought much joy to the Malaysia artistic gymnastics team, who had to contend with the disappointment of seeing two-time defending champion Tan Fu Jie being controversially denied of his third straight gold in the men's pommel horse.

Tan earned 14.200 points for his routine, but was beaten by Vietnam's Dang Ngoc Xuan Thien, who scored 14.400 points despite an error in his execution of the routine.

There was also a surprise gold medal in the athletics competition at the My Dinh Stadium, as sprinter Nor Sarah Adi won the women's pole vault despite having limited time to prepare for the event.

She cleared 4.00m to defeat Thailand's Chonthicha Khabut (3.80m) and the Philippines' Alyana Joyce Nicholas (3.60m) and land Malaysia's third athletics gold at the Games. Hammer throwers Jackie Wong and Grace Wong had won the men's and women's titles respectively.

Nor Sarah also teamed up with S. Komalam Shally, Zaidatul Husniah Zulkifli and Azreen Nabila Alias to win the bronze medal in the women's 4x100m relay.

Follow Yahoo Malaysia's coverage of the SEA Games here.

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