Australian BMX star Saya Sakakibara has been stretchered off through the semi-finals on the Tokyo Olympics after a horror crash left her immobile on the observe.
Sakakibara was clipped from behind by US rider Alise Willoughby whereas main the race, with livid followers calling for the American to be disqualified over the collision.
In a merciless twist, her older brother Kai was left brain-damaged and in a coma for 2 months after an eerily comparable crash whereas using final 12 months.
Commentators had been left with out phrases after the ‘brutal’ crash through the reside broadcast on Seven because the 21-year-old medal hopeful obtained on-course remedy.
Her brother Kai, who turned 25 on Thursday, ought to have joined her on the Australian BMX racing crew for the Tokyo Video games.
However in February final 12 months, he crashed closely whereas racing at a World Cup spherical in Bathurst.
Kai suffered extreme mind trauma and was in a coma for 2 months.
Aussie BMX star Saya Sakakibara, 21, suffered a horrific crash throughout her Olympics semi-final
Sakakibara was clipped from behind by US rival Alise Willoughby whereas main the race. Livid followers known as for the American to be disqualified
Sakakibara is seen being stretchered off the observe after she went down on Friday on the Tokyo Video games BMX semi finals
Sakakibara was properly on her option to scoring a spot within the finals earlier than the horror collision
Sakakibara has since managed to regain consciousness from the horror collision and gave a teary interview to Channel 7 on the racetrack upon realising her goals of successful the gold medal had been taken away.
‘I really feel like I let everybody down particularly my brother,’ she stated in between tears.
‘I am unable to imagine it is over. It simply actually sucks for certain.
‘I need to say to all people again house thanks a lot for supporting me. It might have been nice to be in that last and go for that gold, however that is the game of BMX.
‘I simply need to take this as a plus and ensure I come again stronger for Paris.’
Merciless twist: Saya ‘s older brother Kai was left brain-damaged and in a coma for 2 months after an eerily comparable crash whereas using final 12 months
Sakakibara choked again tears after the collision upon realising her dream of getting the gold medal had been taken away
Sakakibara was properly within the lead together with American Alise Willoughby when the pair collided
Kai and the remainder of Saya’s household had been watching on from Tokyo when she went down through the tense semi-final.
Talking after Saya’s race, Kai stated his sister was properly on her option to getting a spot within the last earlier than the unthinkable occurred.
‘As we speak was all in regards to the ending off what we began yesterday. Which was to qualify via to the ultimate, however sadly Saya had a foul stack and that did not occur, in order that was actually annoying,’ he stated.
‘However both method I am actually pleased with her. I am unable to wait to see her race once more.
When requested by the Channel 7 presenter if he wished to provide a message to his sister, Kai was a beacon of help.
‘Saya, I do know this is not what you wished, however both method I am proud and lets go and put together for the following one,’ he stated.
In one other emotional scene simply minutes after she regained consciousness, Saya was seen strolling over to the observe to hug her boyfriend Romain Mahieu who had simply completed sixth in his personal last.
Twitter erupted after the collision with many asking for Willoughby to be disqualified from the occasion.
‘I really feel that (Willoughby) needs to be disqualified after forcing the crash on race chief Saya Sakakibara within the semi finals of the BMX racing, there was no want for the contact,’ one tweeted.
‘Completely crushing for Saya Sakakibara. She was flying and brought down via no fault of her personal,’ stated one other.
Sakakibara is seen forward of her semi last on Friday
Kai has amazed medical doctors together with his ongoing restoration – he can journey a motorcycle once more – however a protracted highway nonetheless lies forward. He’s in Tokyo cheering on his little sister as she lives out her dream
Kai has amazed medical doctors together with his ongoing restoration after his personal traumatic fall 18 months in the past – he can journey a motorcycle once more – however a protracted highway nonetheless lies forward.
He’s in Tokyo to be a part of the Paralympic torch relay, travelling with their Japanese-born mum and grandmother, however COVID-19 restrictions imply they can’t attend the BMX venue.
The Sakakibaras have been seen cheering on Saya throughout her total Olympic marketing campaign whereas donning their ‘Let’s Go Saya’ T-shirts.
After Saya’s warmth to get into the semis on Thursday, Kai admitted he was feeling anxious.
‘I used to be so scared, as a result of if she made one error, like she did within the first one, she would have been out,’ Kai informed the Seven Community.
‘However she did not. I really feel nice.’
Willoughby is the American spouse of Australian BMX star Sam who was left paralysed from the waist down after a 2016 coaching crash.
In the meantime Australia’s different BMX rider Lauren Reynolds has completed fifth within the finals.
Kai is in Tokyo to be a part of the Paralympic torch relay, travelling with their Japanese-born mum and grandmother