Posts Tagged ‘Ksenia Afanasyeva’
Well, I have survived the MCAT (score pending) and my dissertation proposal (passed!). And I’m back!
A top ten of things I’ve missed, ’cause I’m not going back to talk about all of it. Looking forward now, folks! (And, no, I do not care that Shannon Miller is preggers.)
8. Oksana Chusovitina retires: I’ve never been the biggest fan, but she’s pretty amazing. Sad to see her go.
7. Jordyn Wieber wins the American Cup: Honestly, I enjoy her, and I think that her gymnastics is maturing quite well. I thought the most ridiculous thing about the American Cup was listening to Tim Daggett go on and on about Wieber’s toe-on on bars, and how she doesn’t put both feet on at the same time, and how it’s an eyesore. News flash: people used to do this all the time.
6. Shawn Johnson wins DWTS, insults everyone in US Weekly: I was happy with Johnson’s win; I thought she was quite good. And I really do think she is an amazing gymnast. But I am disappointed that she appears to have left gymnastics behind …. And then she said that she was an outcast on the national team, which seems plausible and might explain her less-than-ferocious desire to return to gymnastics. Still, by contrast, it was nice to see that Nastia Liukin (not always my favorite) is, by contrast, sticking with it. UPDATE: Apparently Johnson’s mirrorball is broken.
5. The FIG sucks: A KISS AND CRY CORNER? What a mockery of any sport. On the other hand, the suggested revamping of judging that should have scores coming faster is good.
4. Semenova is a world-class gymnast, remember? Ksenia Semenova and Ksenia Afanasyeva went 1-2 at Europeans. Semenova was 4th in Beijing. She is a stupendous gymnast, and not just on bars. Her floor is much more mature (as is her body.) And Ariella Kaeslin in third!
3. Youna Dufournet scares the crap out of everyone: At SCAM and Europeans, Dufournet totally falls apart on floor, scaring everyone. But then at French nationals this past week, she pulls out an awesome Def (apparently only French women are allowed to do that skill?)! (Interestingly, Dufournet still lost to Marine Petit and Rose Bellemare.)
2. Jade Barbosa wants to compete at Nationals: Somehow, Jade Barbosa, who has necrosis in her hand is training again. There are no words.
1. Nicolae Forminte has cancer: Skin cancer is very treatable, but if it is true that his wife noticed this spot a long time ago, well, that’s not so great. Prosport has the story. I like Forminte. A lot.
A new article from Pro Sport announces more bad news (and brief good news) for Russian gymnastics.
Alexander Kiryashov has said that Liudmila Grebenkova-Ezhova will not compete in the World Cup Final in Madrid in December. Why? Ironically, a knee injury.
Grebenkova was qualified in 13th place on beam. This leaves the Russians with few people for the WCF — Anna Pavlova (qualified on beam and vault) is out with torn knee ligaments suffered at the DTB Cup earlier this month; and Ksenia Semenova (qualified on bars and beam) has an elbow injury. Elena Zamolodchikova (qualified on vault and floor) is back — she was at the DTB Cup — but not performing at the highest level.
Enter Yulia Lozhecko.
According to this same article, Lozhecko has experienced “psychological problems” after not being selected for the Olympic team. But things are going better, according to Kiryashov. She has been training again at Round Lake since November 6th and her chances of attending the WCF are “more realistic” now that Grebenkova cannot attend.
The whole thing is a little ironic given that Lozhecko is actually ranked 12th to Grebenkova’s 13th on beam, but so national gymnastics politics goes. I’d be very happy to see Lozhecko at this year’s WCF, and given her 12th-place ranking, she should have no trouble qualifying. (Pavlova, ranked above her, is out. Nistor is retired, Liukin and Johnson will undoubtedly not attend, etc.)
For the record, Semenova is ranked 23rd on beam, with Ksenia Afanasyeva 26th. Other than Zamolodchikova and Pavlova, the Russians have no one in the top thirty on vault. Irina Isayeva is the only Russian other than Semenova who is in the top thirty on bars. Zamolodchikova is ranked 14th on floor, with Ekaterina Kramarenko tied for 29th.
The Arthur Gander Memorial, held October 29th, is a competition run by the Swiss, and named after a former FIG president, and has a slightly odd format. Each gymnast competes three of four events.
China, Romania and Russia each competed top female gymnasts: He Ning from China, Sandra Izbasa from Romania, and Ksenia Afanasyeva from Russia. Germany sent Oksana Chusovitina, although Marie-Sophie Hindermann was supposed to compete but withdrew because of surgery for her Achilles.
Izbasa competed a slightly watered-down version of her floor routine, and took a step out of bounds, but continued to land solidly. Izbasa just keeps going up and up in my persoal rankings: she’s competing in four more competitions in the next six weeks and is, according to Nicolae Forminte, the only Romanian currently ready to compete. In this IG article Forminte says that Ana Maria Tamirjan, Gabriela Dragoi and Andreea Grigore are all injured, and that all of the others are “struggling to find motivation,” which could be a problem for my favorite team, sadly.
ThePenguin888 over at YouTube has some other good vids.
1. Sandra Izbasa (44.300)
2. Oksana Chusovitina (44.000)
3. He Ning (43.550)
4. Ariella Käslin (42.400)
The Swiss Cup mixed pairs competition, honestly, is weird. Here’s how it works:
- Gymnasts are paired by country: each country sends one male and one female gymnast. This year twelve countries competed
- In the first round, each gymnast from each team competes on one apparatus of his/her choice.
- In the second round, each gymnast competes on a second apparatus of his/her choice.
- After the second round, four teams are cut based on total score (from the two rounds).
- In the semifinals, each gymnast competes on one apparatus of his/her choice, but the apparatus may not be one of the apparatus competed in the first two rounds.
- On the basis of scores from the first three rounds, four teams are cut.
- In the final, each gymnast competes on one apparatus of his/her choice, but the apparatus may not be the apparatus competed in the semifinals.
- The winner is determined by the combined score from the finals round only.
Exciting for me was also that Youna Dufournet of France competed, although the French team finished only ninth after she fell repeatedly on a pirouette on bars. The Germans did not perform well, with Chusovitina taking a nasty fall on beam. Word has it that she may have torn her Achilles (ironically — see above).
1. China (31.250)
2. Romania (30.775)
3. Russia (30.750)
4. Switzerland (30.025)
When I posted about the provisional new elements submissions I didn’t realize that in fact the final decisions had already been made!
Contrary to my expectations, Nastia Liukin did not get credit for that pike to scale, which I maintain was not a pike nor a scale anyway, kind of like Coffee Talk from Saturday Night Live. Un Jong Hong did not get her Yurchenko 3/1 because she didn’t compete it. That means no new vaults — what a shock, what with nearly everyone doing one of two vaults (vault has gotten so boring, thank god vault finals still exist to give us some variety).
And the winners are:
- He Kexin/Yang Yilin for the 1 1/2 in reverse grip on UB
- Beth Tweddle for the straddle Hecht with 1/2 turn to L-grip (she does definitely own that thing, even if it isn’t always beautiful)
- Lauren Mitchell for this silly jump to chest stand to chest roll with a 1/2 turn, but good for her anyway (it’s an A skill)
- Anna Pavlova/Ksenia Afanasyeva for a pirouette with back attitude (I’m a dancer, so I like what the Russians are doing here)
- Ksenia Semenova/Ksenia Afanasyeva for double pirouette with back attitude!
- Daiane dos Santos for that Arabian double layout (a G element!)
I’m a little bummed for Alicia Sacramone, although her request was tenuous. I’m not sure what is going on with that aerial walkover to arabesque, which is everyone’s favorite new skill (10 people did it, 11 if you count Liukin). Despite assuming it would happen, I am relieved to find out that Liukin hasn’t been credited with her skill.