Already hailed by many as the greatest gymnast of all time, Japan’s Kohei Uchimura added to his impressive rèsumè Wednesday night. But that doesn’t mean Uchimura wasn’t challenged in the race for the all-around gold.
Uchimura won gold with a score of 92.365, just under one tenth of a point better than the score posted by Ukraine’s Oleg Verniaiev (92.266). Verniaiev went into the final rotation in the lead after putting forth an impressive routine on the parallel bars and receiving a score of 16.100 to Uchimura’s 15.600. With the high bar being the final remaining apparatus, Verniaiev appeared poised to win his nation’s first-ever men’s individual all-around gold medal.
But Uchimura did what champions are expected to do, putting forth a quality routine and sticking the landing to post a score of 15.800 on the high bar. Verniaiev’s routine was good, but it didn’t receive the score required to pull off the upset. When the board revealed a score of 14.800 for Verniaiev’s routine, Uchimura had his second consecutive individual all-around Olympic gold medal to go along with six individual all-around world titles.
Taking the bronze was Great Britain’s Max Whitlock with a score of 90.641. Sam Mikulak and Christopher Brooks represented the United States in the individual all-around final, with Mikulak finishing seventh and Brooks 14th. Next up in men’s gymnastics are the individual apparatus finals, beginning with the floor exercise and pommel horse on August 14.