Zou raises the bar with near-flawless display
Zou Jingyuan put in a near-flawless display to claim parallel bars gold in Liverpool but still feels he has plenty left in the locker.
The 24-year-old’s third World Championship title was won with a score of 16.166 after the Olympic champion opted to raise the difficulty of his routine – a move which paid off in style.
It put him clear of Lukas Dauser, whose silver was Germany’s first medal of the week, while Carlos Yulo collected his second medal in quick succession after following vault silver with parallel bars bronze.
“This is the first time I did this 6.9 difficulty routine,” Zou said. “At first, I just wanted to stick with the original plan, use the 6.5 difficulty and perform it perfectly.
“But I decided to perform the harder routine to challenge myself.
“You could see that I was a little bit rushed and shaky, and there was a little pressure. But I am satisfied with my performance.
“This is not all I have in my pocket. I have some other skills that could raise my difficulty if I add them.
“But it is good that I know I can perform well in this 6.9 routine and later I will be confident to add to it.”
Zou has been in imperious form on his favoured apparatus all week, qualifying top with 15.700 and raising that score when finishing with the highest individual score in the men’s team final as China won gold.
He saved his best for the showpiece and now wants to revisit additional apparatus when he’s fully fit.
“I hope to start training for pommel again because I have had an injury in my wrist,” he said. “So the first priority is to recover from my injury.”
For Dauser, a World Championship medal represents redemption after he finished eighth in the European final in his home country earlier this year.
“I feel crazy,” he said. “I can't describe it.
“It was a really big goal for me to win a medal at a world championships after 2019. Also, I fell at the European championships in Munich this year, so it is an amazing comeback from me.
“I can't describe my feelings now.”