The world championships are one of the most intense and busy periods of the year for every gymnastics fan out there and Glasgow certainly was a roller coaster of emotions. We saw fantastic gymnasts performing breath taking routines and writing history in front of our eyes. However, the athletes who earned gold medals or qualified into the finals were not the only ones who are worth watching and the FIG was kind enough to provide us with videos from every routine during qualifications. Some of those routines showed a world class level of difficulty, some of them were brilliantly executed while others showed fantastic artistry and presentation. So, let’s just take a look at the performances that caught my attention for any of those reasons.
Jamaica’s Tori Ann Williams showed a fabulous beam routine which included one of the most difficult mounts and dismounts we saw during Glasgow. She got on the beam with a fabulous front pike and she dismounted with an amazing stuck double front, which reminded me of Yelena Produnova’s 2000 bronze medal winning beam routine. She also performed a standing front tuck, a standing layout step out and a back handpsring into a questionable layout. She also showed great tumbling on floor, where she performed a powerful double layout and a sky high full in while her full twisting yurchenko was among the best ones we saw in Glasgow.
I absolutely adored this floor routine from Eva Mickova, who is a first year senior from the Czech republic. She is using parts of Alicia Sacramone’s 2011 music and she does a fabulous job at interpreting it. She is a very elegant and expressive athlete, with gorgeous choreography and she also wore one of the prettiest leotards we saw in Glasgow.
Words can’t express how much I adore Ilaria Kaeslin, and this floor routine is one of the main reasons why. This girl is an artist and she can dance better than most people out there. Her body just flows like water, she has incredible rhythm and musicality and she sells her routine to the crowd. The triple twist in the beginning and her semenova turn are absolutely fabulous too.
The lovely Loan His of France became a reserve for the uneven bars finals with this routine. She starts with a toe on full into a van leeuwen and she performs a high church and a maloney + pak combination before dismounting with a full in. Once she cleans up her execution and starts pointing her toes, she will get massive scores on this event.
Hungary’s Noemi Makra showed an impressive level of difficulty during qualifications. Her beam routine included a nice front aerial + side aerial combination, a round of into a high layout, a lovely L turn + full turn + side somi combination and a stuck double pike. On floor, she performed a piked full in that could rival Bridget Sloan’s and she stuck it cold while also nailing her triple twist and her double tuck. She is also capable of some beautiful turns, like a gomez and a double L. Her bars set was also particularly impressive, since it included a difficult maloney + hindorff combination, a high jaeger and a beautiful church.
Argyro Afrati is the athlete who is expected to become the leader of the Greek time once Vasiliki Millousi retires after Rio. She is very promising on the uneven bars, where she performs a maloney + stalder hald + stalder full + gienger combination and a van leeuwen. During qualifications she stuck her double pike dismount.
Australia’s balance beam rotation didn’t go quite as planned, but Kiara Munteanu delivered an excellent performance. Her routine included a fabulous round of + layout combination, a front tuck, and a stuck double tuck dismount.
Mexico’s Ana Lago has always been a joy to watch on floor. She didn’t have the routine she would have wanted during qualifications, but we should all ignore her fall and focus on her gorgeous double layout, her stuck tucked full in and her high double tuck. She is a graceful gymnast, with lovely choreography and she showed a beautiful double L + double turn combination.
Tisha Volleman is a first year senior from the Netherlands, who had a fantastic competition in Glasgow. She was particularly impressive on floor and she was chosen to compete on this event during the team finals, over the very experienced Lisa Top. She started her routine with a lovely gomez and she showed powerful tumbling passes, like a full in and a triple twist. There are some great parts during her choreography and she sold her routine to the crowd.
Alexa Moreno, who has been a two times world finalist, is renowned for her excellent difficulty on vault, but she also has a fantastic uneven bars set. The highlight of her bars routine is her unique piked delchev that nobody else in the world can do. She’s also capable of a van leeuwen and a beautiful double layout dismount. She is also a great tumbler, capable of a double layout, a high double arabian, 2.5 twists and a double pike.
South Korea’s Heo Seonmi absolutely nailed her beam routine during qualifications. She doesn’t have any spectacular skills but the elements she did perform were all incredibly clean and she barely had any wobbles. She hit her splits in her leaps, she controlled every element and she stuck her double pike dismount for a high 8.433 execution score. She also impressed me on floor, where she showed a nice double layout, a beautiful memmel turn and some lovely low to the floor choreography.
Kaisa Chirinos, who has represented Finland in the past has now changed her nationality and is competing for Honduras. according to FIG’s website, she was born in Honduras but lives in Helsinki. As expected, she does not have tons of difficulty but I absolutely love the quality of her performance. She is an elegant athlete and she’s showing some attitude and personality during her choreography. She even lost her scrunchie during her floor routine but this didn’t seem to affect her.
Karla Reitz of Mexico is very promising on the uneven bars, where she performs a maloney + bail combination, a van leeuwen, a tkatcev and a high double front dismount.
Devai Boglarka is Hungary’s top vaulter and she showed a high and clean double twisting yurchenko during qualifications. She also has an easy but interesting front 1.5 twisting dismount off the uneven bars.
Eum Dayeon of South Korea has an incredible spinning ability and she performs an 1.5 Y turn and a double turn on balance beam. Her flight series is a side aerial into a back handspring and she is capable a front aerial and a side somi. S performed a strong bars routine, which included a shaposhnikova into a pak salto, a khorkina, a high jaeger and a stuck full in dismount. I love how she performs a shaposhnikova and a khorkina, instead of the toe on or the stalder variations of those elements we usually see.
Her teammate, Lee Hyebeen is a lovely uneven bars worker, who is capable of a maloney + pak combination, a van leeuwen, a tkatcev, and an unusual dismount.
Ariana Orrego of Peru can definitely swing bars. She showed a clean maloney + bail combination, a toe on full into a tkatcev and a beautiful double layout dismount. If you’re doing to wear a pink leotard at worlds, you have to make sure it looks like hers.
Her teammate, Mariana Chiarella performed a dynamic and elegant floor routine, which included a tucked full in, a stuck double pike, and the best ending choreography of the entire competition.
Larrissa Miller has always been renowned for her great work on the uneven bars. During qualifications, she showed a spectacular ricna + giegner combination and a lovely inbar half into a high jaeger. I absolutely love her lines and her toe point and I hope she can clean up this routine and be a contender for the finals next year.
Unfortunately, the Pan-american champion Marcia Videaux from Cuba did not have the competition she would have wanted in Glasgow. However, her first vault, was a very nice double twisting tsukahara. Marcia earned a spot for the Test Event and she will have the chance to qualify to Rio there.
I fell in love with Turkey’s Tutya Yilmaz from the first time I saw her competing and I was delighted to see her performing well in Glasgow. She is a very inconsistent gymnast who struggles to hit under pressure but she is capable of some great skills, like a piked and a tucked full in on floor and a back handspring + layout full and a double pike on balance beam. I adore her sassy floor choreography and the way she sells her routine to the crowd and I hope she can continue hitting her routines and being successful in the future.
Marina Nekrasova, who is now representing Azerbaijan showed a tucked full in, a double arabian, 2.5 twists and a double tuck on floor. She’s using Victoria Moors/Isabela Onyshko’s old floor music and even though she’s not quite as elegant and expressive as them, there are some beautiful moments during her choreography.
Franchesca Santi from Chiles showed a clean double twisting yurchenko on vault and an impressive whip + double pike and a triple twist on floor.
Vietnam’s Phan Thi Ha Than is famous for her great work on vault, where she won a worlds medal back in 2011. However, she is not an one event specialist and she also has a good level of difficulty on the other events. I was particularly impressed with her beam set during qualifications. She just floated during her split leap + front aerial + wolf jump combination, she nailed her back handspring + layout flight series and she got her tour jete half all the way around. She had to take a big step forwards after a rather low double pike dismount, but overall, she gave us a great performance.
Rifda Irfanaluthfi of Indonesia was a joy to watch on floor. Her tumbling passes (2.5 twists, double pike and double tuck) are not particularly difficult but she has a lovely presence. Her routine is very nicely choreographed, she works very well with her music and I absolutely adore her smile and energy.
I wasn’t sure if I should include this routine from Milla Fabre in the list, simply because her difficulty is nonexistent and she falls on a simple front layout. However, this is expected from an athlete representing a small country, without the necessary coaching and facilities and Milla won me over with her dance. Her routine is very nicely choreographed and she shows great musicality, rhythm and flexibility, while also making eye contact with the crowd. I definitely enjoyed her performance and I would love to see some more difficult elements from her
Other floor routines with interesting choreography, were performed by Morgan Lloyd (CAY) Ekin Morova (TUR), who performs a piked and a tucked full in and Masule Kabuba (NAM), who is using Chellsie Memmel’s 2008 floor music.
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