Natalie Uy suffered a hand injury, dealing a blow in her bid to capture a slot in the Tokyo Olympics.
Philippine Athletics Track and Field Association president Philip Ella Juico said Uy would be sidelined for at least a month as her hand injury that she suffered in training required seven stitches to close.
But Juico clarified that the Filipino-American vaulter remains in high spirits and assured him that it will not hamper her preparations for the Summer Games next year.
In fact, she is coming from an impressive performance of 4.30 meters — a feat that broke the 4.25-meter national record she tallied in the 30th Southeast Asian Games last year.
Although she tallied only 4.11 meters in her most recent performance, Juico isn’t worried as she still took the top spot in the 19 to 29-year-old category of the American Track League tournament last 26 July, where she suffered the injury.
“She really needs to take a break, maybe until September. That’s already part of the plan,” Juico said, knowing that it wouldn’t take long before Uy fully recovers.
“It will not really derail her preparation. She just needs to rest — it’s just a minor injury.”
“It just so happened that she got injured in her hand, which is a very vital part in holding the pole. That’s why she won’t really be able to move.”
Juico said Uy’s coach Brad Walker is already investigating the event, citing the possibility that a defect in the equipment had triggered the accident.
“It has nothing to do with Natalie’s technique. I think the problem was in the pole that she used,” Juico said.
“The equipment might have been passed or tossed around before Natalie used it in the competition. They are now checking the serial number of the pole.”
“We don’t know, maybe it was not handled properly and it might have caused a dent or weakness in the pole.”