Tag Archives: Ana Porgras

2011 Will be an AWESOME Year for Gymnastics

I haven’t blogged in quite awhile, and can someone explain how we are already into the qualifying year of the Olympics?  How did it get here so fast?  I dropped out of blogging and gymnastics news for a good six months following the Olympic Games, feeling no quad would ever top the last…..I was wrong.  So wrong I can hardly believe it.  If you would have told me while I was experiencing postpartum Olympic Depression that the next Olympics would have nearly everyone on the US team making comebacks, Russia being on top, and a true fight amongst the AAers and the Team Final I would have told you that you were delusional.

Now a lot of hardcore fans felt that the last couple of years has been less than thrilling and I beg to disagree.  Why?  Because the 2012 Olympics are going to be very 1996ish.  Oh yes they are.  No matter what, amazing gymnasts are going to be left home due to 5 per country.  Amongst at least the Americans and Russians, an amazing gymnast is going to be left out of the AA because of two per country.  This is just like 96′ and even 00′ for the Russians.  In the US we have Rebecca Bross, Jordyn Wieber, and possibly even Shawn Johnson contending for those 2 AA spots.  Russia has Aliya Mustafina, Viktoria Komova, and Anastasia Grishina competing for their spots.  Prelims will be a battle for simply that reason.

As for the Team Final, I would first like to point out that it was all China and US last quad for the team battle.  Not so for this quad.  China, US, and Russia are all going to be pretty equal most likely.  A lot of people may disagree with this, but look at the splatfest of the 2010 World Team Final.  This WILL be like 1996, you MUST hit, or someone else will and take that spot.  For this we cannot forget Romania, who has a history of taking other countries medals because they hit and others just didn’t.  For the last three Olympics that is exactly what they have done.  Russia’s current top 2 will cover 2/3 of their 3 up 3 count.  Grishina is supposedly upgrading on floor and training a much more difficult vault.  If they come out with all 3 of their AAers capable of being the entirety of their TF, then they have 2 spots left for specialists, no other country can currently match that.  But it is still a long way away and anything can happen.  Russia’s got 2 gymnasts that don’t appear to have dealt with puberty yet, and who knows when that will strike and what it will do to them.

I would also like to point out, when comparing this quad to 96′, that we also have our old-school coaches back.  The soviet coach Alexander Alexandrov has returned and I feel like that is odd that the Russian resurgence aligns with that.  And Ocatavian Bellu and and Mariana Bitang have returned to Romania.  I personally feel that you can see their work in Ana Porgras.  Porgras wasn’t the most consistent gymnast, and since their return tell me you can’t see the improvement on beam.  Consistent as hell, and not to mention her speed, rhythm looks just like your classic Romanian….except Porgras does add her grace 🙂

I claimed millions of times that Shawn Johnson and Nastia Liukin were never going to compete again, yet here we are with both of them making comebacks.  Nastia IS, for those of you that don’t believe it, we just have to see how much she will come back for.

Another comeback (from injury) that I am eagerly awaiting is what Ivana Hong will bring.  there are rumors of completely revamped bar sets that look GOOD, and there was a small rumor out there of her competing a very 2006 Catalina Ponor series of Onodi+front aerial+BHS+LOSO.  I will believe all these things when I see them, but I have to wonder what Valeri Liukin has done to work his magic.  After only 6 months with Valeri we saw a slightly improved Hong.  And notice the changes in Bross from 2009 to 2010; there were definitely elements in her FX to show flexibility, as well a tiny move on BB to emphasize that as well.  I feel as if many people see flexibility and thus assume artistic so this was a smart move.  Valeri is masterful at hiding weaknesses and showcasing strengths, so I am eager to see what Hong does next weekend at the WOGA meet.

The US has so many people right now that you would think would totally make the Olympics, Bross, Wieber, Alicia Sacramone, Alexandra Raisman, Johnson, Liukin…but right there that is already 6 members.  Raisman is someone I would like to highlight, because the more time goes on the more I like her.  She has proven herself by being an anchor on half the events in team finals as a fist year senior.  She also apparently doesn’t BS us.  The recent video of her at the training camp showed a potential 6.4 beam routine that looked SOLID, not to mention the fact that her leaps look improved!  Anyone watching all the training footage going on at Worlds saw Alicia trying to help Raisman with performance, and I think we are going to see a difference there as well.  I also firmly believe she will have the Amanar back by Nationals at the latest, and I would expect that she is upgrading floor.  With an Amanar, high start values and solid, consistent routines on beam and floor, how can you deny her?  This could spell doom for Sacramone and possibly Jonhson (or ANYONE else that is a 3 event gymnast that doesn’t include bars).  We cannot take more than one 3 event gymnast to the Olympics.  It just doesn’t seem possible.  2 AA spots, a 3 eventer, and I would say the last spots go to bars people.   Keep in mind that there is no way Nastia won’t be included if she is ready to go on bars.  She is too valuable on this event and could be taken for that one spot alone.  However,the number of bars specialist spots depend on what the others are doing.  Wieber does have the potential to get up in the mid 6’s on bars.  If she did, and Bross upgrades which I highly suspect she will, then you have 2 bar sets included in your potential AAers.

But it is still too early to tell.  Things always happen and people unfortunately get injured.  Who knows what will happen?  The point is that there is enough to keep us highly entertained as we watch the pre-Olympic year unfold.

On a side note, I have the Florida Gator Gymnastics team to keep me excited as well, as I watch intently.  I am hoping this will finally be our year.

On a last side note, I am sitting 6th row, center section with a very good friend at the American Cup on March 5th.   I WILL do a blog for that!

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2009 Worlds: Event Finals Commentary

Wow.  So I must say that I have heard a lot of comments about this Worlds being boring.  Um….no.  This was WAY better than 2005 (comparable because there is typically a bit of a lull the year following the Olympics) and I think the quality of gymnastics that we saw we typically much higher than what we usually see after the Olympics.

So let me just say that Worlds interrupted my life a little bit (and happily so).  I was very behind in school work, forcing me to come home directly after the nail biting Gator Football game and write a paper.  I watched the first night of EF until about 4am, and woke up at 7:45am to watch Day 2.  I nodded off during parallel bars a little bit.

But here were the things that made me yell out loud.

1.  Kayla Williams.  Well, her life just changed.  She will definitely be on the next world team.  The first American woman to win a world vault title.  But it’s not just that…..the quickness in which she has improved over the last few months is of Chellsie Memmel quality.  I am also willing to nominate her in the gruop of “Best DTY Vaulters” because I have seen what….5 or 6 DTYs from her and she has stuck….well, like all of them!  Hello the new Vanessa Atler (minus the nerves).  Can we also talk about how awesome her attitude is?  She is all business, and look at the way she runs off the podium when she is done, adorable.  Then she fights back tears.  Hello to one of my new favorites.

2.  Beth Tweddle if this is your last competition I am glad it ends with a gold medal for you.  Nice last pass.  Sad she didn’t make bar finals.

3.  Anna Myzdrikova would have beat Tweddle if not for that last pass.  The whip double arabian was one of the best pieces of gymnastics I have seen in quite some time.  (Or since Kayla’s DTY haha)  The Triple back tuck combo is also something of great originality.  I love this girl’s floor.  I am sad she didn’t come away with a medal.  But her awesome performances put hope into my, ‘Will the Russians reemerge as a gold medal threat?”  i can wait and hope.  bet you she will be on the World Team next year.

4.  Ana Porgras is another person I am excited about.  3 EF’s and some really great style!  Her Memmel turn  on floor is amazing!  Really excited about this girl’s future.  How I wish she wouldn’t have fallen off the beam!

5.  Yay for Marian Dragulescu winning two gold medals!  How I wish this would have been the Olympics!

Side notes-

He Kexin is looking even better.  WOW.

-I wish Ivana Hong hadn’t wobbled all over the place, I think she could have gotten gold.

Rebecca Bross didn’t do the Gogean, she only did a half.  In the AA I thought this was a mistake….was this planned?  Also, I like her double L.  These elements could have made her bronze on floor.

-After Chinese Nationals, I said that if Deng Linlin didn’t fall, she would be world champion on beam.  This happened.

Ksenia Semenova I am hoping just didn’t have enough time to perpare (I also heard she has a back injury, dunno if that is true) which I hope is the reason for her poor showing.  I really like her style.  Also I have that Russian hope for 2012.

Lauren Mitchell is now a force to be reckoned with.  Watch out world.  i am still hoping that Dasha Joura will come back better than ever next year.

-I hope Anna Pavlova is continuing and coming back.

– I am not a big fan of Sui Lu‘s FX.  Sorry.

-My biggest complain is the stupid bonus gymnasts get by doing jumps after passes (like Mitchell’s stag after her double arabian, though she does it nicely).  This completely negates the “stick your tumbles” rule.  Hate it.

-Beam and floor routines are a lot smoother and look better with the code cutting it down to 8 skills.  Much better.

-These execution scores are ridiculous.  Let’s take William’s DTYT score….a 9.175?  I think that was actually the HIGHEST execution score of WAG Worlds.  That should have been like at least a 9.5.  I would take a tenth for the split legs on the preflight, one for the slight crossing of the ankles toward the end.  MAYBE a tenth for distance.  You know what?  Let’s take a tenth for height too.  She lands ON THE LINE so no deduction there.  Okay, well that E-score is a 9.600.  What the heck is with all that anyway?

Here is a list of what I wish would have happened at Worlds….

AA

1.  Bross

2.  Sloan

3.  Porgras

VT

1.  Hong Un Jong (wish she hand’t fell even if I love Kayla)

2.  Ariella Kaeslin (this really happened!!!!)

3.  Mzydrikova

UB

1.  Kexin

2.  Tweddle

3. Semenova

BB

1.  Deng (yay!)

2.  Porgras

3.  Bross

FX

1.  Tweddle (another ‘yes’!)

2.  Myzdrikova

3.  Mitchell (this is actually my favorite routine, but Myz’s tumbles I like better)

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2009 Worlds: Bridget Wins the All Around

Congrats to the 2009 World All Around Champion, Bridget Sloan!

Sloan captured the title with 57.825 ahead of Silver Medal Winner Rebecca Bross (57.775) by a tiny margin of .050 after Bross fell on her final tumbling pass.   it was the last routine of the meet.

A surpise bronze medalist, Japan’s Koko Tsurumi showcased some of the cleanest gymnastics of the meet.  She lead the first two rotations, huge scores on beam and bars.  (14.850 and 15.050).

Unfortunately, Romanian Ana Porgras fell off the beam into a 7th place finish.  She was up on the podium a long time before the green light, so I think she just got a little unfocused perhaps.  She will be a force to be reckoned with once she upgrades vault.

The highest score of the night was rebecca Bross’s 15.300 on balance beam.

Sloan improved her beam (though with wobbles tonight) to a 14.000 from her Prelims score of 13.825.  her bars also went up two tenths to a 14.800 and vault also improved from a 14.550 to a 14.825.  Her final routine of the night, floor, Bridget had an amazing performance….nice landings and a stuck double pike end.  Her score of a 14.200 I actually thought was low.

hates off to 4th place Lauren Mitchell of Australia.  .050 also separated 3rd and 4th places, and Mitchell’s OOB on her last event, FX cost her the bronze.  Mitchell received a 15.100 for her amazing beam set.  Look for this girl in both event finals Sunday.

Way to go everyone!

I thoroughly enjoyed this competition, I thought Bross had it in the bag.  I love both these gymnasts, and I thought Sloan demonstrated some amazing sportsmanship today, running off to comfort her teammate before celebrating her own victory.  Nice.

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2009 Worlds: WOW! Thoughts on Qualifications

PRELIMS VIDEOS ARE HERE AND HERE PLUS HERE

First off, here are the standings after Qualifications:

AA

1. Bross (USA) 57.400
2. Porgras (ROU) 57.300
3. Mitchell (AUS) 56.675
4. Deng (CHN) 56.350
5. Sloan (USA) 56.075
6. Kurbatova (RUS) 55.950
7. Tsurumi (JPN) 55.925
8. Yang (CHN) 55.500
9. Kaeslin (SUI) 55.450
10. Semenova (RUS) 54.900

VT

1. Williams (USA) 14.812
2. Hong Un Jong (PRK) 14.787
3. Myzdrikova (RUS) 14.450
4. Kaeslin (SUI) 14.325
5. Kurbatova (RUS) 14.225
6. Dufournet (FRA) 14.212
7. Rogers (CAN) 13.975
8. Garcia (MEX) 13.862

UB

1. He Kexin (CHN) 15.975
2. Rebecca Bross (USA) 15.050
3. Cha Hyong Wa (PRK) 15.025
4. Tsurumi (JPN) 14.775
5. Miller (AUS) 14.650
6. Sloan (USA) 14.600
7. Porgras (ROU) 14.575
8. Licchetta (ITA) 14.200

BB

1. Porgras (ROU) 14.850
2. Kim Un Hyang (PRK) 14.775
3. Deng Linlin 14.450
4. Hong (USA) 14.400
5. Mitchell (AUS) 14.400
6. Tsurumi (JPN) 14.375
7. Yang Yilin (CHN) 14.375
8. Preziosa (ITA) 14.275

FX

1. Myzdrikova (RUS) 14.500
2. Sui Lu (CHN) 14.275
3. Porgras (ROU) 14.175
4. Tweddle (GBR) 14.075
5. Mitchell (AUS) 14.050
6. Gil Ortitz (COL) 14.050
7. Deng Linlin (CHN) 14.00
8. Bross (USA) 13.950

WOW!  So many unexpected happenings!  I can barely organize a single thought, so I will go through each individual gymnast….

Rebecca Bross–  1st after qualifications WITH A FALL!  Considering that 2nd place Romanian Ana Porgras did not fall….this is definitely Bross’s title to lose Friday.  No major mistakes should give her the win.  An unfortunate over rotation on her Patterson beam dismount made Bross just miss beam finals (14.150).  Too bad because the translation of that score would be enough to get the gold.  I thought Bross could make UB finals (which she did, qualified 2nd) but I thought there would be no way she would medal.  I was wrong.  Bross also qualified 8th into FX finals (13.950).   Should someone scratch from the beam final, Bross is the 1st reserve.  I am excited, because gymnastically, Bross is my favorite right now.  I love her style, the way she hooks her hand as she goes into round off.  I am conflicted though, because I believe that if Bross is the 2012 champ, WOGA will rule the world in gymnastics, and I would absolutely loathe that.

Bridget Sloan– Had a bit of an off day, qualifying 5th into finals.  I feel like Bridget is a 2nd day gymnast…should do better Friday.  She did not made FX finals (rough landings) which I expected, and made bar finals, which I actually did not expect.  I love her bars though, that piked toe on Tkatchev is awesome!  She also fell on beam.  But this is kind of like Nationals….hopefully Sloan will pull it all out for Friday….

 

Ana Porgras–  Hats off to the Romanian of the future!  She qualified 2nd into the AA, 1st on beam, 3rd on floor, and 7th on bars!  I completely expected her to be top 3 on beam, and MAYBE qualify for FX, but wow!  Porgras also shows a form and style not typically seen from the Romanians.  I now predict that Porgras is to be the new Romanian star of the quad….I will go as far as predicting that she will be back in London for 2012.  After watching some videos on youtube, I must say the potential for Porgras is immense.  Furthermore, this is her first major meet and looks how she comes out on the first day!  This will be a force to be reckoned with, mark my words.

Kayla Williams–  QUALIFIED 1ST INTO VAULT FINALS OVER THE OLYMPIC CHAMPION!!!!!  Enough said right there.  This girl will medal on Saturday.  Unfortunately, teammate Bross took over her FX spot for finals.

Anna Myzdrikova–  An amazing floor routine qualifies her first.  I predicted she would be on the medal stand.  She also qualified 3rd into VT finals!  Whoo-hoo!  Anyone following this blog knows that I am hoping upon hope that the Russians are about to emerge again as a gold medal force to be reckoned with this quad.

Ksenia Semenova–  The disappointment of the day for me.  She didn’t qualify to any event finals, and is 10th in the AA standings right now 😦

My heart goes out to Beth Tweddle.  A large mistake left her from UB EF.   She does have a really great floor set, and a stumble on her first pass tells us that she may well take the gold on this event…it is definitely possible.

My official predictions for Finals:

AA

Bross, Porgras, Sloan.  I am hesitant between bumping one of those names out and putting in Lauren Mitchell.

VT

Hong Un Jong will pull it out and score gold.  Williams will be second, and I think Ariella Kaeslin will end up 3rd over Anna Myzdrikova.

UB

He Kexin is a sure bet for first if she doesn’t fall, it is impossible to catch her if she hits.  I think Bross will be second, followed by Koko Tsurumi.  Who knows though.  Cha Hyong Wa will medal if she goes as clean as she did today. If something happens, and Bridget does not get an AA medal, for some reason i think she will throw the routine of her life and get a bronze.

BB

I think Ana Porgras will be first, Deng Linlin second, and either Ivana Hong or Lauren Mitchell for bronze.  We shall see.  Keep in mind that 2nd through 8th place are separated by 5 tenths of a point.  Deng got penalized for overtime, Hong and Mitchell did not perform their best routines (Mitchell had a bigger mistake I believe–so more potential to score big)

FX

I think Tweddle will rally and pull off the gold for a wonderful close to the competition/her career.  I hope she does.  I am hoping for Myzdrikova to place second.  I think Sui Lu or Ana Porgras will take bronze.

What I have learned this day:

China has the power to rule the world in gymnastics.  I am also hoping against hope that as the quad progresses (and juniors become seniors) that Russia will emerge as the greats they once were.  Scoring is bizzaro low to me, I can only hope that gets better with the quad.  And obviously the scoring tweaks have done nothing to eliminate those who can win with a fall, as Bross is in first with a fall.

As with the Nationals this year, it is such a different experience to watch without super favorites and root for so many people!  It is so much fun.

I cannot wait for Friday!

Nice Link to EF qualifiers here

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2009 Worlds: WAG Qualifications Results – Rebecca Bross Leads With a Fall

Click here for live updates.

I will update this post all day long.  Turmoil for Bridget Sloan so far, fall on beam and messy floor has her behind Kayla Williams for FX!  Rebecca Bross can probably take away the FX Final spot.  Ivana Hong is currently 3rd on beam with a good routine (think she had a fall on bars)  Deng Linlin also had a good beam set but Romanian’s Ana Porgras leads beam so far!

UPDATES

Beth Tweddle fell and will not be in bar finals 😦  Awwww, and neither will Ksenia Semenova

Even with a bad beam set, not her best floor, Sloan is 3rd in the AA with 2 subdivisions left.  Deng is in second, Porgras 1st.

Sloan may be making bar finals (yay!)  And He Kexin received the only score in the 15’s with a 15.975 on her bar set.  (As a poster on wwgym said; Kexin could stop in the middle of her routine, go have a smoke break, and still qualify, hahahaha).

Yang Yilin will not be in bar finals 😦

Standings after 4 subdivisions (1 more left)

AA

1. Porgras (ROU) 57.300
2. Deng (CHN) 56.350
3. Sloan (USA) 56.075
4. Kurbatova (RUS) 55.950
5. Tsurumi (JPN) 55.925
6. Yang (CHN) 55.500
7. Semyonova (RUS) 54.900
8. Dufournet (FRA) 54.375
9. Morel (FRA) 54.200
10. Bui (GER) 54.175

Vault
1. Kayla Williams (USA) 14.812
2. Hong Un Jong (PRK) – 14.787
3. Ekaterina Kurbatova (RUS) 14.225
4. Youna Dufournet (FRA) – 14.212
5. Brittany Rogers (CAN) – 13.975
6. Marissa King (GBR) – 13.850
7. Jana Komrskova (CZE) – 13.812
8. Valeri Maksiuta (ISR) 13.675

Bars
1. He Kexin (CHN) – 15.975
2. Cha Yong Hwa (PRK) – 15.025
3. Koko Tsurumi (JPN) – 14.775
4. Larrissa Miller (AUS) 14.650
5. Bridget Sloan (USA) – 14.600
6. Ana Porgras (ROU) – 14.475
7. Ekaterina Kurbatova (RUS) – 14.200
7. Serena Licchetta (ITA) – 14.200

Beam
1. Ana Porgras (ROU) – 14.850
2. Kim Un Hyang (PRK) – 14.775
3. Deng Linlin (CHN) – 14.450
4. Ivana Hong (USA) 14.400
5. Koko Tsurumi (JPN) – 14.375
5. Yang Yilin (CHN) 14.375
7. Elisabetta Preziosa (ITA) – 14.275
8. Ksenia Semenova (RUS) – 14.075

Floor
1. Sui Lu (CHN) – 14.275
2. Ana Porgras (ROU) – 14.175
3. Beth Tweddle (UK) – 14.075
4. Deng Linlin (CHN) 14.00
5. Kayla Williams (USA) 13.900
6. Youna Dufournet (FRA) – 13.625
7. Bridget Sloan (USA) – 13.600
8. Ekaterina Kurbatova (RUS) 13.475

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