Monday 14 July 2014

Tan Sixin has retired

This has been looming for quite a while and is now public news. She of the glorious oversplit leaps and particularly amazing beam, but also epic meltdowns such as 2011 TF floor, has retired. I'd hoped when she re-emerged last year with some very nice work that she'd make a full comeback, and we may see her yet at small competitions and maybe Asian Games if they need her, but she will not be in the running for major international competitions.

I know this would be better with a source, but Chinese news is secret and when made public as in this case, it doesn't come with official sources. Unfortunately, many girls fade away quietly, the prime example being Zeng Siqi earlier this year.

Wishing her a happy and healthy future.


  1. Oohhh...I hate it when successful juniors don't transfer that success to their senior years. It's one of the most annoying things about gymnastics!

    But with Tan Sixin out, who else would China send to Worlds? I know she's been inconsistent in the past but last year she looked improved. Not only that but she has Worlds experience. Do you think this will hurt China's chances at medaling in Nanning, Catherine? Because I know they don't have much depth.

    1. I haven't put her into the team at all as I knew this was on the cards, but I did think with her success last year she should have factored in even with her past worlds record.

      China's team will I think be Shang Chunsong, Yao Jinnan (Yizi), Tan Jiaxin (recovering from injury), Huang Huidan, Bai Yawen and Chen Siyi. There's a lot of potential for huge scores but also inconsistency in this team. Wang Wei who has also retired is a big loss.

    2. I agree with Catherine that those are the players to make the Chinese team, but i will add Wang Yan who i think is available age wise. she is a amazing vaulter with a rudi and a double tusk, she has a great beam routine, and her floor can improve to score a in the low 14s.

    3. Wang Yan will go to YOG so you know she's not eligible this year.

    4. Yep, Wang Yan is too young. Xie Yufen is not though, I seem to always forget either her or Bai Yawen when naming potential teams. I am a little afraid for WY. She had a bit of a meltdown at Jr Asian championships and I think there's a huge amount of pressure on her. There is no need in the wide world for her to be thinking of training 2.5 or triple tsuk..

    5. Tan Sixin was never in the running for Nanning. If she'd continued for another few months, she probably would have been selected for the Asian Games team, but Worlds were never in the cards.

    6. Yeah I just can't pinpoint where she stopped being a hope. Even with the numerous vault and bars disasters last year I did think she was showing some lovely work. Probably late last year or early this year that it stopped looking like she could be in the mix.

    7. Hey there,

      can you tell me where you got the information and where you are getting the information about TC in general?
      The Blossom Gymnastic site has not been updated since May and since I can't read chinese I have problems keeping up with TC.

      By the way, you are doing a wonderful job! I love your blog!

      Greetings, Mareen

    8. Rumors of Tan Sixin's retirement first appeared on Chinese social media sites about a week ago. Tan Sixin herself confirmed the news on her own Weibo (Chinese Twitter) over the weekend. Chinese news comes from a variety of places, both official and unofficial: Weibo, news outlets (Sina, QQ, etc.), and message boards. Insiders also provide a fair bit of information.

    9. Catherine, I think TSX still looked like a decent prospect at the end of 2013 because she won beam at the National Games and then went on to win the AA and BB at the East Asia Games (she probably should have gone to worlds in ZSQ's place, but that's a whole different kettle of fish). She also performed reasonably well at the DTB Cup. But 2014 got off to a rocky start for her when her long-time National Team coaches left and she was reassigned to a new training group (Wang Wei and ZSQ were also heavily affected by this reshuffling). She did OK at a small regional meet in April, but she looked out of shape and generally dejected at Nationals in May. Even after her lackluster performance in Nanning, I thought she'd be a shoo-in for the Asian Games team, simply because China has so few seniors this year. But it's not to be. Ah, well, best wishes to TSX for much happiness in her post-sporting life .

    10. Thanks Mareen :)

      I have access to insider information about Team China, it's not via a website. Blossom is fantastic though sadly yes not updated very often. When news about China becomes public (i.e it reaches Chinese social media) I do my best to share it here, but only if it's 'open' news.

    11. Ah, it's all coming back to me about TSX's past year, thanks!

  2. In Chinese Nationals 2014 CCTV live broadcast (which I viewed in youtube), the commentator said that due to the lack of depth in China's WAG, they would use the same team for Asian Games and the Worlds if TSX is left out of Worlds, I guess we won't see her in Asian Games either........or has the situation changed?

    1. If she's retired, she's not going to the Asian Games or Worlds.

  3. There are eight gymnasts in contention for the Asian Games and World teams: Bai Yawen, Chen Siyi, Huang Huidan, Shang Chunsong, Tan Jiaxin, Xie Yufen, Yao Jinnan, and Zheng Wen. (Zheng Wen is 1995-born. She's been on the National Team since at least 2008. Her sole international competition to date is the 2013 East Asia Games. She has a slight chance of making the Asian Games team, but not much of a shot at the Worlds team.)

  4. I think team China could absorb a fall in team finals and Nanning and still snag silver. Even though they do not have much depth, their team looks better than Russia, Romania, GB and Canada.

    1. Also as a side note Catherine, your teams that you predicted in January are actually pretty close to what seems to be shaping up, so excellent work! I think we'll have a better idea of what USA looks in a week or two.

      Do you know where Gabby Jupp is in her recovery/comeback?

    2. China has absolutely no margin for error. They'll be lucky to take bronze. Silver would be a major achievement.

    3. They actually have quite a bit of difficulty ahead of other major teams. It depends of course - if Russia's star veterans are able to return to form, China will have less of a comfort margin. Here is the break down assuming a team and using the max awarded D scores shown so far in 2014
      Team China
      Yao -- 5.8 - 7.0 - 6.5 - 5.7
      Shang - 5 - 6.7 - 6.6 - 6.1
      Huang - 4.4 - 6.8 - 7.1 - 5.0
      Tan - 6.3 - 6.6 - X.X - 5.1
      Chen - 5.8 - 6.2 - 6.5 - 5.5
      Bai - 4.4 - 6.5 - 6.3 - 5.3
      TF (VT: 17.9, UB: 20.5, BB: 19.6, FX: 17.3, Team Total: 75.3)
      Assumes Tan Jiaxin has an amanar. If not, 74.8.

      Mustafina 5.8 - 6.3 - 6.4 - 5.9
      Soskitsnaya 5.8 - XX - XX - 5.7
      Kharenkova 5 - XX - 6.6 -- 5.8
      Komova XX - 6.5 - 6.5 - XX
      Paseka 6.3 -- XX -- XX -- XX
      Spirodonova? XX - 6.4 --5.6 - 4.9
      TF: VT 17.9, UB 19.2, BB 19.5, FX 17.4, Team total 74.0
      This team assumes the return of Komova and Paseka with world class routines. Spirodonova could be replaced by an AA gymnast and bars could be covered by Paseka, who had 6+ at one point and had a great training video a while back. An AA gymnast who could do a better floor than Kharenkova and a better beam than Mustafina would be great, but I don't think Nabs or Kramarenko are up to it. Grishina could still be out? She's not at Round Lake, and I still have no idea where Shelgunova is in her recovery. Russia can challenge for silver for sure, but they have never had a clean team competition, even when they won in 2010. In a pressure situation, China and Russia tend to make a similar number of errors, but China has the edge in difficulty.

      Iordache - 5.8 - 6.1 - 6.4 - 6.3
      Bulimar - 5.0 - 5.3 - 5.8 - 5.8
      Munteanu - 5.8 - 5.1 - 6.4 - 5.7
      Stanila - 5.8 - 5.1 - 5.5 - 5.5
      Zarzu - 5.8 - X.X - 5.5 - 5.4
      Totals VT 17.4, UB 16.6, BB 18.6, FX 17.8, Team total 70.4
      A four to five point deficit will allow China some comfort in TF. Romania is steady, but I don't how how reasonable it is for these girls to squeeze out more tenths. Maybe the sixth girl currently lives on the bars and will contribute a huge score for Romania.

      Other teams I was able to do: GB (Tunney, Downie, Whelan, Fangrapane, Harrold, and 2013 Gabby Jupp) 72.3. Canada (Moors, Black, Onyshko, Vaculik, Chant, Yu) 71.1. Australia (Mitchell, Miller, Munteanu, Vivian, Brown, Godwin) 69.4.

      USA (Biles, Skinner, Ross, Dowell, Kocian, Baumann) has the most difficulty at 76.9, but I think this is in limbo since Skinner has never gotten 6.8 for example and I used Ross' 2013 UB routine. The total D could be higher if Baumann is swapped out for a 2013 Priessman, but I'm not so optimistic about Priessman's status for worlds.

    4. Edit, Huang Huidan has a 6.1 beam. I didn't add 7.1 for the total for the beam score/team score.