Wednesday, August 24, 2011
Mother Russia's World Team
Mother Russia announced its provisional World Team yesterday and they look to be preparing with 2012 on their minds. Despite a rough showing at the Russian Cup, Maria Paseka (VT, FX) was given the nod alongside first-year seniors Viktoria Komova and Yulia Belokobylskaya. The other spots on the team are comprised by Tatiana Nabieva (VT, UB), Anna Dementyeva and Ksenia Afanasyeva.
The Russians are not in peak form yet, but they look like they could have their act together in eight weeks. Vika Komova is looking back on bars and beam. She may just pull off an AA victory should her preparation continue smoothly. Ksenia Afanasyeva showed moments of brilliance in prelims and event finals, but struggled during the AA Finals. Her leadership will be needed during team finals.
The alternates are Alyona Polyan and Yulia Ishina.
Anna Pavlova was not chosen, despite winning vault this past weekend. The powers that be say that they will not take someone for one event, which is quite the burn to a talented and accomplished beam worker.
As expected, Aliya Mustafina won't go to Worlds. The coaches told her otherwise during her early rehab stage in order to keep up her spirits and her fitness level. Doctors are now being honest and say she can't resume full training until December. It is amazing that the idea of Aliya competing at Worlds was entertained...as they aren't allowed to dismount into pits in world-level competition.