The Russians are almost ready for the Worlds

The friendly meet between Russia, the Netherlands, Spain and Sweden was, as expected, dominated by the Russians. They have started the competition on floor. I must confess that they have really stolen the show from the beginning: great choices of music for all six athletes, beautiful choreography, topped by almost perfect execution. The most surprising of all was Ksenia Afanasyeva's routine who will probably be one of the three they will choose for the team finals.

or you can watch it here, on LuisaGym's channel

their floor routines were marked as follows:
Ksenia Semenova: 13.75 (5.3)
Ksenia Afanasyeva: 14.45 (5.9)
Anna Myzdrikova: 13.95 (5.6)
Alyia Mustafina: 14.55 (5.9)
Anna Dementyeva: 14.05 (5.7)
Tanya Nabieva: 14.2 (5.5)

The vault was a so and so rotation for the Russians: the great Amanar thrown by Mustafina, was overshadowed by Nabyieva's failure (she was quite upset afterwards). Anna Myzdrikova looks good but the others seem to have a bit of landing problems.

Ksenia Semenova 14.1 (5.3)
Anna Myzdrikova 13.85 (5.6)
Alyia Mustafina 15.9 (6.5)
Ksenia Afansyeva 14.6 (5.8)
Tatiana Nabieva 13.45 (5.8)
Anna Dementyeva 13.55 (5)

or you can watch it here.

On Uneven Bars, they looked ready, scarily so... Although during the warm-up Mustafina failed to catch the bar after one of the realase, she did not have any problems afterwards and she earned a 15.45 (well deserved). And when we thought we had seen everything, Nabieva showed up. It was a beautiful, spectacular routine and she was finally pleased.

or watch it here.
Ksenia Semenova: 14.35 (6)
Ksenia Afanasyeva: 14.35 (5.7)
E Kurbatova: 5.9 (14.8)
Alyia Mustafina: 15.45 (6.7)
Anna Dementyeva: 14.3 (5.7)
Tanya Nabieva: 15.8 (6.8)

The last rotation was the balance beam. That did NOT go well. I think that only Mustafina and Semenova managed to stay on the beam, but not without problems either. Mustafina's routine, out of a 5.6 earned her a 14.2 but I personally think the mark was a bit high. So were all the other marks on beam, as I saying there were some major errors: Ksenia Afanasyeva fell on her standing arabian, Anna Dementyeva fell after the layout combo, Tanya Nabyeva fell on a spin, which made Ekaterina Kurbatova haugh, it was funny to see the mean Khorkina type of laughter at her teammate's mishap... she was trying to hide it though probably not to distract Nabyeva attention.

or you can watch it here.

Ksenia Semenova: 14.5 (5.8)
Ksenia Afanasyeva: 14.1 (6)
Anna Myzdrikova: 13.6 (5.3)
Alyia Mustafina: 14.2 (5.6)
Anna Dementyeva: 13.95 (6.1)
Tanya Nabieva: 13.2 (5.7)

A few words about each gymnast:
Mustafina must be the next all around World champion. She has the diffculty, the execution and the grace we want any all around champion to have. She only has one weaker event, the balance beam, but I would say that the Amanar vault makes up for any minor problems she may encounter on beam.

Ksenia Afanasyeva is really in great shape. She looks good on all the events so I bet she will be the second all around contender for the Russians at the 2010 Worlds. She has managed to regain all that beautiful floor work and is trying to upgrade her difficulty on beam.

Ksenia Semenova looks very well although she does not have same level of difficulty as her teammates I mentioned before. She has good execution on all the events but compared to 2007-2008 her uneven bars set looks much more laboured. I think we should "forgive" her for that because she is now almost as tall and heavy as Anna Myzdrykova, it must be really difficult to re-adjust, especially on bars.

Tanya Nabieva: seems to be on a constant fight with herself and the apparatuses and the rest of the world. And she has almost managed to win everything. I seriously doubt she will land the Amanar in time for the Worlds, but hey, she has had the same war with the uneven bars as well and we saw what happened.

Anna Dementyeva: the baby of the team, will probably be their contender for a medal on beam this year. She has great lines, nice execution, everything she does looks flawless and the BB mishap really looked a more of a lack of confidence than a real problem.

Anna Myzdrikova: she has managed to regain almost all the 2009 floor magic, her pretty decent vault may land her a spot in the team but probably we will only see her in qualifications.

Ekaterina Kurbatova: we did not see much of her actually... she will probably be only an alternate at the worlds. Yesterday she looked like the grounded kid, a bit bitter, trying not to smile too much, although there was not much pressure on her and she could have just relaxed.

All in all, watching the Russians competing is the perfect Saturday afternoon for any gymnastics fan. I want to thank my friend Luiza for having me with her there. She has recoded almost all the routines of the Russians so watch out for those on her youtube channel.


wagrobanite said...

What was that first release move?

Bea said...

@wagrobanite it's a layout toe on Tkachev