Posts Tagged ‘He Kexin’
These are some great photos of the Chinese Olympians from a Chinese magazine (I don’t do Chinese, so I can’t translate the text, maybe someone else will be able to?):
We’ve got He Kexin, Li Shanshan, Yang Yilin, and Jiang Yuyuan.
The FIG has released a list of the qualifiers for the World Cup Final who have confirmed their participation plus the next gymnasts down the list who will be invited. The lists are prettty much as predicted.
Participants are Cheng Fei, Elena Zamolodchikova, Jana Komrskova, Ariella Kaeslin and Dorina Boczogo.
The next three down the list are Hong Su Jong, Aagje Vanwalleghem and Olga Sherbatykh I’m thinking we can count out Hong (Hong Un Jong has already said she would not participate, and while I realize they are not the same person, it seems like a good predictor). Sherbatykh is also out. Vanwalleghem is likely to compete, which moves Hong Mi Kang (ranked 18th) into the last qualifying position. She recently took first on vault at the 2008 Asian Games.
According to the FIG, Dariya Zgoba has confirmed her participation, which makes Zgoba, He Kexin, Jana Sikulova, Yang Yilin and Anastasia Koval the qualifiers.
The next invitees are Jiang Yuyuan, Vanessa Ferrari and Iryna Krasnianska. Jiang will almost definitely participate, Ferrari is definitely out, and I’ve heard that Krasnianska is probably out too. The first replacement would be He Ning (17th) and the second is … Koko Tsurumi (18th)!
Fei qualified first onto beam (as well as vault and floor) and is followed by Sandra Izbasa, Li Shanshan, Yulia Lozhecko and Daniele Hypolito. Hypolito has already confirmed her participation, though Elyse Hopfner-Hibbs is actually ranked above her.
Although Hopfner-Hibbs curiously declined her invitation on bars, she has expressed a desire to compete on beam if qualified, but rumor has it that she has already decided against participating because of final exams, etc. The next two invitees are Lauren Mitchell and Deng Linlin. I am curious about the Li confirmation, because she had been sent back to train with her provincial team. I presume, though, that the FIG did not get this wrong (though stranger things have happened). Even if Hopfner-Hibbs competes, we probably still have one place left because Deng is rumoerd to be injured. Next on the list is Lenika de Simone (18th), whose participation (if I’m not mistaken) would put Naomi Ruiz out of contention on floor, because Spain is only allowed to nominate a competitor if they have no other qualifiers. Should de Simone decline, next up would be Zgoba (19th), qualified and confirmed on bars, and Alina Kozich (21st), who is qualified and confirmed on floor too.
Fei is first, followed by Izbasa — just like beam (which is exciting!). They are followed by Jiang, Kozich, Suzanne Harmes and Hypolito.
Zamolodchikova is first on the next list of invitees, and will undoubtedly participate. Patricia Moreno is next and retired, so that’s not happening. That leaves one spot to fill on floor, which could theoretically go to Daria Joura (16th), but the most likely competitor is Tsurumi, who is now likely qualified for two events!
It’s shaping up to be a good final, presuming everyone makes it to Madrid with no further injuries. I’m predicting Cheng on vault and beam and Izbasa on floor, but I don’t put much stock in my own predictions. I’m still calling He on bars. I’m doubting will see any major upsets.
It would be nice to see Zamolodchikova on the podium, but I think it’s a long-shot. Kaeslin has a decent shot at a medal on vault. The bars final could easily go Chinese 1-2-3 with He Kexin, Yang and Jiang. I have no idea about what kind of shape Li is in, but she could definitely compete on beam, as could Mitchell, though I have them competing for bronze with Cheng and Izbasa in the top two spots. On floor, Kozich could squeeze in for a medal, but I would expect Jiang to take third.
Today was the last day for invited gymnasts to confirm their participation at the World Cup Final in Madrid on December 12-14.
In this press release, the FIG announces the presence of the following athletes:
- Daniele Hypolito (which we already knew …)
- Ariella Kaeslin
- Jana Sikulova
- Jana Komrskova (!)
Jana Komrskova is the big surprise because it was thought she may have retired. In fact, she competed at a competition last week in Central Europe (results here, Sikulova also participated). In case anyone forgot, she was born in 1983! Catching up to Oksana Chusovitina there.
Finally, Naomi Ruiz was nominated as the female Spanish delegate. The host country is allowed to nominate one participant if they do not otherwise qualify, and apparently Lenika de Simone on beam is not it …. Ruiz will compete on floor.
Given this information, what does this mean for the line-up? The FIG has invited the top eight athletes plus four reserves, as shown here.
A maximum of four of the top eight vaulters will be participating: Cheng Fei (2), Elena Zamolodchikova (5), Hong Un Jong (7), Carla Giovannini (8). Off the reserve list we’ll see Kormskova and Ariella Kaeslin. The only other possibility is Anna Grudko, which seems unlikely. So even if all of these people participate that would be seven. I believe that Hong never confirmed, and I doubt Grudko has, leaving only seven. Anyway, it’s pretty clear Cheng will win barring true craziness.
On bars, the possible participants among the top eight are: He Kexin (6), Sikulova (7) and Yang Yilin (8). Ksenia Semenova and Dariya Zgoba are injured, as is top-ranked Beth Tweddle. Off the reserve list, only Anastasia Koval will compete, making four. I would predict a He victory, but I know some are expecting (hoping for) a Yang upset.
There is room for improvement in the beam competition, with only Cheng (4) and Sandra Izbasa (7) coming from the top eight. Add to that, however, Li Shanshan and Yulia Lozhecko off the reserve list. We know that Liudmila Grebenkova is out, and I have heard off the rumor mill that Irina Krasnianska is as well. Apparently she was seen judging in Ukraine last weekend. Not sure about this. With Kransianska on board, that makes six, otherwise only five.
This will be the biggest smackdown, unless you count He vs. Yang on bars. Participants are: Cheng (1), Izbasa (2) and Jiang Yuyuan (6). Off the reserve list we have Alina Kozich and Daniele Hypolito. That makes five. I give this one to Izbasa, both because I prefer her and based on past performance. But then who doesn’t love Cheng … and perhaps she deserves it after all her troubles at the Olympics. This will be the event to watch I think, especially given Hypolito’s tumbling and Jiang’s all-around bad-assness, though I don’t expect either to contend for gold.
The big question is whether the FIG will go on to invite some other competition, otherwise we will have some pretty lame finals. The competition will be good, but it’s always nice to have a bigger field.
Given the rankings and what we know about retirements, injuries, etc., it would be nice to see (with asterisks by those whose readiness for competition might be in question, and double asterisks next to those who would clearly be ready):
13. Dorina Boczogo
15. Aagje Vanwalleghem
18. Yong Mi Kang
19. Marissa King*
20. Elsa Garcia
13. Jiang Yuyuan**
15. Irina Krasnianska*
17. He Ning**
18. Koko Tsurumi**
19. Daria Joura*
20. Daniele Hypolito**
13. Elyse Hopfner-Hibbs
15. Daniele Hypolito**
16. Lauren Mitchell**
18. Lenika de Simone*
21. Alina Kozich
14. Elena Zamolodchikova**
16. Daria Joura*
23. Koko Tsurumi**
26. Elsa Garcia*
27. Yasmin Zimmermann
Notice that this takes us all the way down to 27th on floor! There are a couple of people I have left out based on assumption. Jana Bieger, for instance, turned down the Pan Ams so she could train for the American Cup next year; though perhaps she could be enticed by hopes of a WCF medal (she would “qualify” on floor). Deng Linlin is said to need surgery and won’t be back for quite a while, which leaves her out on floor and beam. Vanessa Ferrari is out on bars (and floor, where she is in the top eight), also because of injury. Then, naturally, there are some people in there who are retired, for instance Emilie Lepennec or Li Ya.
Voila. I’ll leave it at that, without trying to predict the final rosters. But here’s hoping the FIG invites some interesting people further down the lists!
Unsurprisingly, China has named Cheng Fei, He Kexin, Yang Yilin, Jiang Yuyuan and Li Shanshan to participate in the 2008 World Cup Final in Madrid. (See here.)
This FIG press release also confirms the participation of Sandra Izbasa, Elena Zamolodchikova and Suzanne Harmes. But it also notes the absence of Anna Pavlova and Oksana Chusovitina. I also assume that Ksenia Semenova won’t be present, but can’t confirm that at this point.
With Chusovitina (who is ranked first) and Pavlova (ranked third) out, Cheng has the vault nearly locked up unless Zamolodchikova has massively improved since her performance at the DTB Cup. Alicia Sacramone is also up there in this ranking, followed by Jade Barbosa — neither will be there. Hong Un Jong may be the only real competition. And if that’s the case, I think Cheng can assume that this one is in the bag.
He is ranked only sixth right now on bars, but she’s the front-runner, with Yang second unless Beth Tweddle shows up. Nastia Liukin will obviously not be there, and I’m pretty sure Semenova is out as well. Dariya Zgoba is ranked high (second) but can’t truly compete against the Chinese start values.
I think at this point, I might consider calling this for Cheng too. Pavlova, Johnson and Liukin are among the top eight, and won’t be there. Steliana Nistor is also out, and wouldn’t have taken first anyway, in all likelihood. Catalina Ponor, who is currently ranked first, hasn’t shown up in international competition in a while, so I don’t know what kind of shape she is in. Cheng’s biggest competition is likely to come from other Chinese women, and notably Li.
This will likely be the most interesting battle, and it will probably play out among Cheng, Izbasa and — to a lesser extent — Jiang. Harmes is ranked tenth on floor, but I don’t think she has a chance at the podium with these players, unless we see a major mistake. Zamolodchikova could also theoretically compete on floor, but only if she’s in much better shape by mid-December.
While some less-experienced seniors and juniors were off at the Massilia Cup, a number of big players — notably He Kexin, Sandra Izbasa, Lia Parolari and Daniela Druncea — were in Milan for the gymnastics Grand Prix.
From what I’ve heard, He won bars with a massive score (a 17.000 over Lia Parolari’s 14.700), Izbasa won floor, and Parolari won beam. Supposedly the younger Italian gymnasts Serena Lichetta and Andrea La Spada were also present.
There are no official results anywhere, so I’d rather wait to post those, but for now here’s He’s bars. It’s full difficulty. I think it’s better than Beijing, but not as good as Doha. The first Jaeger in her Li Ya combination is molto dynamic
, and she sticks the landing (it looks stuck but it’s not from the replay). Still a bit problematic on the low-to-high transition though:
Given the scores, it appears Izbasa may have had a fall on beam (she had a 6.4 start value). She competed floor with a 5.8 start value. Parolari’s start value on floor was, for whatever reason, a 4.9.
He and Izbasa got the only B-scores in the 9’s, on their winning routines.
I was glad to hear Druncea is back in competition. For whatever reason, I enjoy her. From youtube, though, it seems that she still has that terrible FX routine. Here she is on bars:
All results available here.
1. He Kexin (17.000)
2. Lia Parolari (14.700)
3. Serena Licchetta (14.300)
4. Andrea La Spada (14.100)
5. Daniela Druncea (12.650)
1. Lia Parolari (14.850)
2. Sandra Izbasa (14.650)
3. Andrea La Spada (14.400)
4. Daniela Druncea (14.150)
5. Serena Licchetta (13.750)
1. Sandra Izbasa (14.850)
2. Daniela Druncea (14.000)
3. Serena Licchetta (13.750)
4. Lia Parolari (13.600)
5. Andrea La Spada (13.550)