25 reasons for which we love the 1999 Worlds (PART 2)

6) Maria Olaru
In her own words: "I never thought that my work could remain unrewarded... Honestly, at that time what happened seemed natural, I did not have doubts that I wouldn’t win. I was actually waiting for the contest knowing that it will happen… The evening before the AA final... it was not a premonition, I was simply having the positive nerves, a good positive feeling and eagerness. In the previous contests, the team finals and the qualifications I ended up on first place all around, it was an unofficial title but therefore I knew that I only had to do my job the next day.

It was a deja-vu feeling, I could visualise that I will be overwhelmed by the press, that after I won I would be very busy and would not have the time to sign autographs for everybody. So the night before, in order not to upset people, I prepared 2000 autographs. And then this really happened. After I won they took me to the press conference, doping tests, everybody wanted me somewhere so because I was prepared I shared my autographs and I wasn’t left with any. At the press conference, when they asked me “how do you feel about being a world champion?” and I answered “It was the natural thing to happen”, they were shocked by my answer. I was either very well prepared or this deja-vu affected my thinking."

Watch the entire interview here

7) The beam final
the finalists: Laura Martinez,  Maria Olaru, Dong Fanxiao, Anna Kovalyova, Olga Teslenko
the medalists: Olga Roshupkina finished third: her dance elements probably had the best amplitude in that final, she had a nicely choreographed and complex routine plus she made the side somis look artistic;
Andreea Raducan won silver: perfect lines, daring skills (full twisting back tuck), worked with confidence and determination, she was world champion material - 
but the judges gave it to the home favorite, Ling Jie: Andreea had one step out of the full twisting back tuck and a hop on the dismount; also her routine seemed slightly imbalanced - there was quite a lot of arm waving in the second half and maybe too little gymnastics;
So, Ling Jie with her beautiful choreography and perfect line was Beam World Champion 
As they say, it feels right when a Chinese wins the Beam title...

8) Team Australia
The 34th World Championship was was the most successful, up to that point, for Australia. The increased efforts dedicated to making their team a top player in the world started to pay off: it was the first time Australians qualified for the team finals (finished 5th ahead of US!), they had 3 gymnasts in the AA finals: Alana Slater (9th), Lisa Skinner (16th) and Trudy McIntosh (25th) and Trudy also managed to qualify for the VT finals placing 5th, just 0.025 away from the bronze medal.
I thought that their best apparatus, as a team, was the FX but they were looking very polished on uneven bars as well.
My favorite routine was Alana Slater's uneven bars:

9) Zamo

Elena Zamolodchikova was so tiny and had such a long name that the TV commentators used to say it would go around her leotard if gymnasts had to write their name on the back like soccer players. 
This was her first world championship and she made a strong impression through her gymnastics skills and also her charisma. She won the all around bronze and the gold on vault. The positive attitude, the bright smile, the explosive style instantly made her a star.

10) The team Finals: China's UB rotation

During the team finals, China had a great uneven bars rotation. They were spot on: three of their five competitors, Huang Mandand, Ling Jie and Liu Xuan,  got scores above 9.7.  
Even the other two gymnasts, that were not known as bars specialists managed to pull off beautiful routines which included a Comaneci release by Dong Fanxiao and a full twisting double straight by Bay Chunuye.

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