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Day 1 Recap

October 7, 2011
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The results and videos post is coming, but I am going to do both days together, so here’s a little recap with some videos.

Team
Romania, as expected, is leading the team competition. They were not flawless today, but they did their job for the most part. Porgras had some major errors, including a fall onto the beam on her switch ring that will leave her out of finals and a fall on her double layout off of bars (but who didn’t see that coming). There were, however, many highlights. Ponor was spectacular today and is first on beam. She had the best DTY of the day as well, and hit floor. Bulimar is first on floor at her first worlds. Haidu was fantastic, but more about that later.

A montage of Romania today from the FIG, which makes everything more dramatic and negative than it really was. Click here for a few Romanian beam routines from the FIG.

Australia was second, about 5 points below Romania. They also had a good day, with most of their struggles also coming from their star for the past few years, Lauren Mitchell, who fell on beam and went out of bounds on floor. Other key players were Emily Little, who is 5th all around at the moment, and Larissa Miller, who is leading bars.

Miller’s bars. Click here for many more videos of Australia.

Canada is a surprising third, ahead of the Netherlands. The Canadian women should be very proud of what they did today. Their stars were Lee, who is 7th all around and Gerber, who was the alternate and ended up competing three events very well.

Gerber on floor. Click here for more videos of Canada.

The team from the Netherlands did not do as well as they would have hoped, but should still qualify for the test event, while Canada has a very small chance at ending up in team finals. Celine Van Gerner, however, did a great job.

Mexico, Venezuela, Uzbekistan and Greece will probably not make the test event, if last year’s scores are a good representation of what other teams will do. They may not be, though, because scores seem very tight so far in Tokyo, while they were usually pretty high in Rotterdam. Mexico is ranked the highest, 5th, with a score of 206.751. Uzbekistan is 7th, but will definitely improve on last year’s rank (24th).

All Around
Miss Raluca Oana Haidu (no Raducan or Maria there FIG- get it right!) is leading the all around! Who saw that coming? Haidu did very very well today. She started by hitting one of her best beam routines ever right after Porgras fell. Then, she scored a high 13 on floor and a low 14 on vault, the only place that she can probably improve a lot for finals. Possibly more impressive is that she is fourth on bars, and the top Romanian. She might even be in the top group for the all around. Who saw that coming. Last year, being the only chance for Romania to have two all arounders may have caused Raluca to have a meltdown, but this year she really stepped up and performed the way we knew she could.

Despite her misses, Lauren Mitchell is second all around. She is a medal favorite, but probably will not be in the top group in the all around if all goes as planned tonight. She can improve her all around score if she hits her two best events and upgrades bars for finals (she said that she might), but she won’t be scoring over 60 like she was at trials with these judges.

Celine Van Gerner is another girl who exceeded all expectations. Third all around is a huge accomplishment for her. She scored very well on bars and beam (in finals for now), and was consistent on vault and floor. I love seeing her clean gymnastics rewarded.

Ana Porgras had a pretty bad day on her best events and is fourth. That might not sound too bad, but she only scored 54.832. When was the last time that Porgras had a sub-55 AA score? She really needs to get her act together for finals. She’s going to have trouble getting near the medals, because she’ll probably start the all around on beam or floor. It would be really nice if she could just land a clean double pike dismount off of bars.

Emily Little had a consistent day and finished fifth, with a high score of 14.533 on vault. Jessica Lopez, somewhat surprisingly, is only sixth. She only did a yurchenko full, and the judging was tough. Lee, Millousi, Goedkoop and Maksiuta round out the top 10. Unless there are some huge problems today, I do not think that anybody outside the top 10 will go on to finals.

Event Finals

Vault will be by far the most diverse event final at worlds. Both the top qualifier, Pena from the Dominican Republic who competed a Produnova and the third qualifier, Phan from Vietnam, are from traditionally weak gymnastics nations. And I don’t mean weak like Venezuela, which has some decent results, I mean weak, with pretty much no team or individual results at all, ever. It would be great to see these gymnasts in finals. The others in the top four are also from weaker nations: Alexa Moreno of Mexico and Valeria Maksiuta of Israel. Actually, everybody who competed two vaults is from one of these nations or Poland, Croatia, Puerto Rico, Peru, Indonesia, Denmark, Chinese Taipei or Jamaica. It’s pretty cool, even if the quality of vault finals is not that high. The top four could make finals; I’m not sure about the rest.

I said earlier that all of the bars finalists could be from day 2, and that is still a definite possibility. Larissa Miller and Celine Van Gerner, who hit their routines, might have a shot. It would be a huge accomplishment if they made it.

Four Romanians make up the top 5 on beam: Ponor, Racea, Haidu and Porgras (in that order). Millousi is fourth. Ponor was spectacular, except for her dismount, and will definitely make finals. Racea should make it too, but there is a chance that she will not. This is actually one of the finals (the only one now) that could be eight gymnasts from the top 4 countries. Millousi and Van Gerner can make it if there are some falls tomorrow. The Australians probably won’t. Mitchell, unfortunately, is 10th with a fall.

Mitchell also struggled on floor, but is still second. That final looks possible, but not definite. Diana Bulimar is first, and will hopefully go through to finals. Chelaru, like Mitchell, may have just missed out. It is hard to figure out how the judging is working without videos, though. Their routines could be equivalent to a 14.7 at last year’s worlds and I just don’t know it.

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