Praise rains on Kohei Uchimura from media and his competitors, but also this from his coach:
“He is not a human being,” Hiroyuki Kato said before Uchimura won his record fifth straight World all-around title in Nanning, China, on Thursday, according to Agence France-Presse. “Other athletes fight by pushing themselves to the limit. But Kohei can fight by using a few tenths of his ability.”
Uchimura dominated at a global championship for a sixth straight year. He has scored at least 15 points on all 30 of his all-around finals routines over the last five. No other gymnast has scored straight 15s at one of those competitions.
The scariest part for his competition? Uchimura isn’t satisfied.
“I have always competed by bearing in mind where I have made no mistakes,” Uchimura said after winning, according to AFP. “As a result, it was indeed my fifth straight victory. But I kind of feel I am still not there yet.”
Uchimura repeated his admiration for retired Belarusian gymnast Vitaly Scherbo, who won six gold medals at the 1992 Barcelona Games.
“My goal, indeed, is to perform in a way more beautiful than Scherbo’s routines,” Uchimura said, according to AFP.
Uchimura, 25, plans to compete through the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. He is slated for one apparatus final this weekend, high bar on Sunday (broadcast schedule here).