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Voronin Cup Videos

December 23, 2010

I decided to share some of my favorites (and least favorites!). It turns out Anastasia Grishina’s mother did go to the competition and film it, even though Anastasia did not compete.

First, the lovely Anna Pavlova is back! She has improved a lot since the beginning of this year. If she hadn’t been injured, it would have been a disgrace not to take her to worlds because after all of her years in the sport, she deserves a gold medal. Here is her vault from the all around. Her power is definitely back! This vault looks as good as ever. Unfortunately, her second vault has been under-rotated post-injury. Her beam currently looks beautiful, except the questionable yang bo jump. Bring back the switch ring leap, Anna! Unfortunately, she hasn’t gotten back her difficulty on floor, and bars is simpler than ever. I’m starting to think that she trains bars so that she can get all around results, but wants to focus on vault and beam. She’s still dismounting with a simple layout flyaway. If I were her, I would completely drop bars and maybe floor. I’m only hesitating about floor because it was so wonderful at her peak, but she’s never going to get her most difficult tumbling back. That knee still appears to be bothering her a lot. *UPDATE* Pavlova’s beam from event finals! She looks fantastic. It was a layout to two feet, which has been bothering me all week since I watched it at a crappy angle. I thought that it was, but then she did 5 Ds so I thought otherwise. This routine only starts out of 5.8, but it could be brought up to around 6.4 with some upgrades that she’s competed before (switch ring leap, sheep jump, two backhandsprings into the layout to two feet, side somi into kolesnikova, front aerial backhandspring layout stepout). I don’t expect her to actually make all of these upgrades, but some of them are certainly possible. I don’t think that the triple twist will ever be back.

Yulia Inshina was the second Russian to make beam finals. Unfortunately, she fell, so this is her routine from prelims. Despite saying in an earlier post that Inshina won’t really make it anywhere because she is a decent all arounder without a stand out event, I think that this routine is very nice. Her form, for the most part, is very good, and her mount is original. She needs to get rid of those wobbles and add more difficulty before she can think of being part of the Russian beam lineup.

Maksyuta’s beam is really pretty, except for some obvious leg separations (I don’t need to post another picture of her double pike, do I?). She has a nice set of skills that she can perform relatively well, and her choreography is decent. Like Inshina, she needs to get rid of the wobbles.

Before the meet, I thought that Sophia Lee could challenge for a medal on bars, but she fell. I enjoyed her beam routine from event finals, besides the painful looking fall. Her combinations are pretty typical for a WOGA gymnast, but they are all well executed. Her releases on bars are very high, but she’d need to do more of them in combination to make an impact in the US or internationally.

Moving to Uzbekistan (unsurprisingly) does not seem to have done any favors for Elizarova’s gymnastics. Galiulina beat her here in the all around, which is significant because Uzbekistan will only get their top all around gymnast at the Olympics unless they qualify as a team, which is unlikely unless they naturalize a few more Russian national team members. She is still a joy to watch, especially on floor and beam. Her beam during the all around was incredibly wobbly, and she’s downgraded her dismount.

Maria Dunaeva needs to get new music right now. I’m not sure how the Russian coaches did not realize that “hey” is a word, but it is, and it makes her floor routine worthy of a full point deduction (which I don’t think they took). Her tumbling is pretty good, except for that double “pike” with bent legs.

Beam is probably my favorite event to watch Tatiana Nabieva on. She does some original skills that you don’t see in every routine, and her form doesn’t make me want to vomit. I hate that her double twisting yurchenko beat Pavlova’s, so I’m not even going to post it. She seems to have a good thing going on bars. I’m not sure what prompted the routine change (a. falling on the Nabieva almost every time, b. falling in team finals every time or c. not making bars finals at worlds with a “hit routine”), but I’m not complaining. If she can get a routine that she can actually hit without major built in deductions that’s worth anywhere near her old routines, it’s a good thing.

Mustafina seems to have (almost) gotten past her recent inconsistencies on bars. She had a minor mistake on one pirouette, but everything else was as good as it ever has been. She has replaced bars with beam, and is now struggling there. She’s added some new combinations, so she’s clearly trying to make it better but having a tough time. She clearly is being pushed to peak two times a year, and that is euros and worlds. She only vaulted a double twisting yurchenko here. Her floor looked very good- she probably would have won the world title with this routine.

Yulia Lozechko looks like she’s never going to be the gymnast she used to be. It’s a bit painful to see a gymnast who used to be one of the top 10 in the world actually not deserve to be on the national team (not just to not make it because the coaches hate her).

Galiulina has been very good on beam recently. She’s wobbly here, but a year ago it was rare for her to stay on. I love her beam work and hope that she makes some upgrades and makes finals next year at worlds. It’s unlikely but possible. Actually, I hope she medals so she and Elizarova can go to the Olympics, but there’s about a .000001% chance of that happening.

Anastasia Sidorova is awesome! If she can continue improving at the rate that she has been since the beginning of the year, she will be almost a lock for the Olympic team along with Mustafina, Komova and Grishina. Her floor is amazing. Look at those landings! I have a feeling that her confidence is growing from winning all of these competitions in Grishina’s absence.

Valeria Grishane of Latvia fell on her last pass, but I was kind of impressed with this routine since I haven’t really seen any Latvian gymnasts since Ludmilla Prince (and before her Yelena Sazonenkova and Natalia Laschenova, top Soviets). She shows a bit of elegance (I think she would do well with better choreography) and pretty decent tumbling.

I’m pretty sure Maria Bongareva was the little girl who was given an award at the end of event finals. Her floor is actually pretty good, especially since it looks like she’s about twelve years old. Her choreography and precision are pretty good for her age, and she has a memmel (who doesn’t?)!

When I first noticed little Anna Rodionova at the beginning of this year, I couldn’t believe that she was age-eligible for the olympics. She seems to have had a growth spurt since then, and actually looks like a fourteen year old gymnast instead of an eleven year old. I noticed her for her bars, which have a typical russian composition (piked stalders, dismount combination), but they seem to have weakened in the form department, so here is her beam. She could straighten her legs a bit more, but overall it’s a decent routine. I don’t think she’ll be in the mix in 2012, but if some of the top gymnasts retire she could be in the mix in 2013.

Diana Elkina has very nice form on beam. Her skills are simple, but the difficulty will come eventually. She’s London eligible like Rodionova, but she won’t be there unless she improves a ton. Her double tuck with practically no effort is quite impressive!

Vasilieva showed some of the tough combinations that the Ukrainians are known for on beam, and struggled. Still, she showed a lot of potential for the Ukraine. She finished second all around, and if she didn’t fall here she would have finished ahead of Sidovoa (who also fell at least once). She is not eligible for London, but her teammate Lyubitskaya who finished third is.

Alissa Baumann looks good! She made some mistakes that could be expected since this is her first international competion, but she also got some pretty great scores including a 14.45 on floor! Her beam was very shaky with two falls and a grab, but she did land a new arabian. Her form is very good.

Last, Kristina Sidorova is growing on me. She’s actually quite a good tumbler! She competed a double arabian, full in, 1 1/2 through to double tuck and a double pike. Her choreography is a bit “juniorish,” but that will improve in a few years. I’d put her in the same group as Rodionova and Elkina: she won’t really be in contention for 2012, but she’s a solid B teamer.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. einseika permalink
    December 24, 2010 6:35 AM

    Maria Bondareva seems quite promising. She’s only 11 and seems to be the best of her age group in Russia at the moment. Russian coaches always seem to have their juniors compete far too difficult UB routines that they can barely ever get through (I guess coming from the Soviet practice of teaching difficult skills early then polishing them), but Bondareva does a good job with her routine for someone so young.

    Regarding Anastsia Sidorova, I remember from an interview with junior head coach Ostapenko in the summer that he said he’d moved on to working with the 1997+ girls already, but was also still working with Grishina and Sidorova (presumably to give them some pecial attention), so I’m pretty sure those two are definitely in the early plans for the London team. Unfortunately, Grishina’s inured of course but it seems to have been paying off with Sidorova – it looks like she’s been working hard and a lot of effort is being put in to her choreography and the general look of her routines etc.

    • December 24, 2010 7:44 PM

      Wow, I didn’t know Bondareva’s age for sure, and it just makes me more impressed with her. Her bars are actually pretty decent, but she should not be doing a pak salto out of her tkachev. She’s so tiny, which probably means that the only way to get it around is the gigantic back arch and the huge leg separation. The routine will certainly be good in a few years and is very impressive, but now it looks a bit labored.
      I just watched some videos of her from last year, and Sidorova has improved dramatically. Her difficulty, execution, confidence, ability to perform etc. have all gotten so much better. I wish I could say the same about Grishina (who has improved since last year), but she hasn’t competed at all. I wonder if they will switch them over to Alexandrov in 2011 or wait until 2012. Both of them have a very good chance at 2012, and at least Sidorova seems to be paced very well.


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