The 2017 Baku World Cup took place in a field dominated by veterans with the vault medals being taken by experienced vaulters such as Teja Belak (Bronze), Emily Little (Australia) and Oksana Chusovitina (Gold).
The bars field was dominated by the Australian girls that come fresh from competing at the first Melbourne World Cup. Georgia Rose Brown took bronze while her teammate Rianna Mizzen took silver however the memorable performance was that of new senior Diana Varinska, who with her uneven bars routine has put Ukraine back on the gymnastics map.
On beam Little took bronze and we were happy to see Millousi has not retired yet, she’s surely aiming towards this year’s European Championships, still hoping for the beam medal that has always eluded. However, the absolute favorite here (and who will be at Europeans) was Catalina Ponor although here in Baku she did struggle with her dismount taking several steps backward.
Floor finally gave the home-crowd the joy of medal with Marina Nekrasova’s bronze, while silver was taken by Emily Little and Ponor took gold again, although again she struggled and nearly put a hand down at the end of her last pass.
So, Jump To Our Cool Facts from the competition or continue reading for detailed performances and links to videos.
In the vault final Slovenia’s Tjasa Kysselef had a good first vault but sat down her Yurchenko 1 and ½ for a 6th place finish. Greece’s Argyro Afrati had two good vaults however low difficulty kept her in 5th place. Home-girl Marina Nekrasova finished 4th after averaging a 13.700 and missed bronze by just 0.050.
Slovenia’s Teja Belak’s won bronze with a 13.750 after two good vaults the second one being a Yurchenko 1 and ½. Australia’s Emily Little easily won silver by performing a double twisting Yurchenko and a Tsukahara full, she averaged a 14.067. And veteran Oksana Chusovitina claimed gold after being the only gymnast to present two vaults with a difficulty value above 5, she averaged a 14.333.
Home girl Yulia Inshina finished 6th after performing cleanly on bars but with very low difficulty, her routine had just a 4.4 in D value. Angelina Radivilova (Kysla) performed a 5.3 difficulty routine that included a Maloney to Pak and a double front dismount for a 5th place finish. New senior Wang Cenyu was on the way to podium with lovely pirouetting work and a piked Jeager but sat down her double front and scored a 13.033.
Georgia Rose Brown graced the bars with a toe-on full into a Maloney connected to a Pak. She also included a Jeager release and a double front dismount. She had the highest execution score with a 8.166 which added to her 5.2 difficulty was enough for bronze with a 13.366
Rianna Mizzen opened her routine with a Weiler kips sequence and followed with a Maloney to Hindorff to Pak but had a big form break during the transition and also arched her back in the full turn just before her dismount however her 6.0 difficulty helped her into a silver medal with a 13.600 score.
Diana Varinska made heads turn with her release combo Tkachev half to Jaeger that was the highlight of a very difficult routine (valued with a 6.0 D value) that included a Maloney to clear hip full and full in dismount. She was the revelation of the competition and her win makes her a contender for the European title on bars in Cluj Napoca.
Australian Emma Nedov was very secure throughout her routine however low difficulty, a fall on her switch ring and the 0.1 neutral deduction she incurred for going overtime left her 6th in the final. Wang Cenyu again missed a medal after falling off the beam early in her routine she also had a very big step to the side on her 2.5 twist dismount. Home girl Marina Nekrasova finished fourth after delivering a solid routine that had an 8.000 E-score but only a 5.1 D- value for a total of 13.100.
Emily Little performed her routine without any major breaks and stuck her double pike dismount but a low difficulty value (5.2) meant she had to settle for bronze with a 13.433. Vasiliki Millousi, who is currently 32 years old, won silver (13.633) with an elegant routine that included a split leap into front aerial into ring jump, with this result Vasilliki is a contender for a medal at the upcoming European Championships.
The queen of beam, Catalina Ponor, debuted a new, quite risky mount, a back handspring layout stepout, she also had a split leap to Kotchetkova and a beautiful Onodi to split jump to Omelianchik. Her dismount, a double pike, was very uncontrolled and she was forced to take several steps back. While she won the gold (13.833, D-score 5.6) medal her score was considerably lower than in qualification (14.233, D-score 6.0)
Goksu Uctas and Doga Ketenci, both from Turkey placed 5th and 6th respectively with clean routines but in general low difficulty. The same for Greece’s Ioanna Xoulogi who placed fourth with a 12.633
Marina Nekrasova gave the crowd the joy of a bronze medal after performing a routine that included a tuck full in (low landing), double Arabian, a double tuck (stuck) and a good 2.5 twist. Emily Little did an excellent job with a double wolf turn, double layout, full in tuck, double tuck and double pike for a 13.400 and the silver medal.
Finally Catalina Ponor took gold on floor after a double layout (stuck) and piked full in (hop back), 2.5 twist to punch layout front (perfect landing not so good twisting form in the air) but just like the beam it was the double pike that really gave her trouble landing with very low chest and nearly putting her hand down. Her difficulty (5.4) helped her place 1st with a 13.433