Thursday, 22 November 2012

The Lineup of Dreams

Mai Murakami and Aliya Mustafina will both compete at the upcoming DTB Pokal World Cup. I'm so excited I can't bring myself to remember the rest of the lineup, though the Japanese team is much the same as it was for the Asian Artistic Championships. Asuka Teramoto is not listed and wasn't at Japanese Nationals either so must still be dealing with her arm injury. Rie Tanaka and Koko Tsurumi have both made noises about retiring (personally, I think 25 year old Rie Tanaka moves with the ease of a 15 year old and looks to have a lot left in her, but then that doesn't mean she has not struggled) so the Japanese world team next year will be interesting. It's nice to get a good look at who's in the running. Some lovely moves from the Japanese too, such as Risa Konishi's 3.5 twist on floor! It was previously thought that Mustafina would not compete at all for the remainder of this year, so this will be exciting to see that even if she has watered down out of season, if her steadiness on beam in particular has improved. Both gymnasts will feature in the team competition segment..along with Oksana Chusovitina who has taken back her retirement AGAIN and is looking to Rio.

Vanessa Zamarippa will be making another shot at elite. I don't believe she would do so with any real expectations of going much further than Nationals, especially considering that the huge depth of talent is going nowhere fast. However, she had a glorious Cheng last time she tried, so it would be great to see that again.

Here is the lovely Mariya Livchikova of Ukraine at a recent meet. Mariya has been showing the typical inconsistent Ukrainian streak lately, but this is a glorious return to form with her trademark unique combinations. This scored 15.250. Looking forward to seeing her make an impact in the new quad.

Victoria Moors was slightly injured at Massilia as I thought, she had some muscle tears in her back and consequently watered down her tumbling. However it's not going to be an issue for long thankfully.

Rebecca Bross and Catalina Ponor are headlining an upcoming gala in Mexico. Should be interesting to watch, can't help but think it's a swansong for both- I am one of those who think Rebecca is done. Here are some highlights; both looking in great shape.

Cata fights back against high-cut leotards for once and for all!

The Kelloggs Tour is over, but Gabby Douglas, Aly Raisman and Jordyn Wieber are all going on a second tour, which incorporates cheerleading. This of course also means that we are pretty much guaranteed not to see any of them at Scam or Jesolo or somesuch meet. McKayla Maroney as previously mentioned still has a few weeks left before rehab. We of course all hope that Kyla Ross is busy upgrading like a beast.

Polina Schennikova also known as mini-Nastia has been added to the junior national team. No word on other additions or on upgrades. Laurie Hernandez has some nice ones, impressive given that she's still only 12. Nice Hults, the most likely addition to the national team did not attend camp due to injury. It appears that Sarah Finnegan is also injured, having been pictured recently with a heavy splint on her elbow.

Spare a thought for Jacoby Miles, a 15 year old Level 9 gymnast from Washington who paralysed herself from the chest down a few days ago. Jacoby was in the middle of a double back dismount off bars into a pit when she got lost in the air and landed on her neck on a mat. The nerves are not severed, so there is some hope that she may walk again. Given how absolutely insane the cost of medical care is in America (which I have myself experienced firsthand), donations are sorely needed. You can find ways to donate or help here.

On a more positive note, Simona Amanar's new baby girl is nicknamed 'Amanar vault'. D'awwwwww. I've forgotten stuff, but I'll add to this.


  1. Personally, I wouldn't want to be nicknamed 'Amanar vault'!! So glad to be seeing more of Mai & Musty <3 And Chuso is amazing - but I must say I wasn't exactly surprised when she took back her retirement again :P

    I can't believe there is ANOTHER tour. Quite sick of the Fierce Five by now, hope Kyla can pull something out of the bag. I think Bross is done too, would love to see more Cata but I think she's probably going to retire soon too.

  2. This just means in my opinion that Gabby, Jordyn, and aly will probably return to gymnastics in 2014.

    Rebecca I believe is done and I've noticed in some pics from the tour that she's put on some weight. But hopefully she will enjoy herself at this gala especially if its her last competition.

    No news from recent camp about upgrades. Although I read that Ebee has a few minor upgrades for the world cups but her floor routine wilo be pretty much like trials.

    1. I've heard some of Laurie Hernandez'. Not incredible or anything, but impressive for a 12 year old. She interests me more than the majority of the rest put together.

      Ebee needs bar upgrades badly. But the most pressing need of all is a floor routine that does not make people wish for Gabby's by comparison. Just horrendous everything except tumbling.

    2. I prefer ebee on bars than beam lol. But i wish she would practice flexing and pointing her feet. Her floor has great tumbling but her dancing is not good at all.

      What were the rumored upgrades from Laurie. Damnit when are we gonna know about Kylas upgrades lol

  3. I read over the weekend that Larissa is out if world cup in Stuttgart I believe. Perhaps Ebee has a chance to win AA.

    1. Damnit, I haven't read that...I still keep up to date with the big 4 in particular (woo data). Hope this isn't true. Although of course I don't want her to compete if she is still having foot issues or exhausted or something.

    2. Yes she's out of both. Damn. Replaced by Kim Bui in one and Niamh Rippin in the other. I KNEW those two were competing ages ago, but it seemed like they were filling in the empty gaps.