2012 Olympics | July 27 - August 12
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Irving Saladino

Irving SaladinoSport: Track and Field

Nation: Panama

DOB: January 23, 1983

Career Highlights: The defending Olympic gold medalist in the long jump, Saladino hasn't exactly thrived since putting his name firmly on the map in Beijing. He looked to be on his way to becoming one of the greatest long jumpers ever after winning gold in the Central American and Caribbean Games in 2006, the Pan-Am Games and World Championships in 2007 and the FBK Games and Olympics in 2008. But it's been a rocky road filled with a few injuries and many disappointments since. Saladino reached the final of the 2009 Worlds but was eliminated for three invalid jumps. At the 2010 and 2011 Worlds, he posted five failed attempts in six jumps, causing many to speculate that his problems are more mental than physical. The Panamanian chose to leave his training grounds of Brazil in 2010 for his native country, where he's trying to work his way back to being the jumper he once was. Saladino took the 2012 indoor season off to focus on outdoor events and prep for an Olympic return. Only 29, if he can find the form he had four years ago, there's no question Saladino could provide a worthy defense of his gold.

Olympic History: 2008

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