Posts Tagged ‘Anamaria Tamarjan’

In praise of Patrascu

July 3, 2008

Never mind that she’s not doing full-difficulty dismounts — Cerasela Patrascu belongs on the 2008 Romanian Olympic team.

Videos from the 2008 Romanian Nationals show that Patrascu, despite a knee injury at this spring’s European Championships, could have a positive impact on Romania’s fight for what will likely be a bronze medal in the team competition.

Cerasela Patrascu, 2008 Romanian Championships, Uneven Bars:

Cerasela Patrascu, 2008 Romanian Championships, Balance Beam:

Several months ago I picked the impressive Patrascu as the one to lead the Romanians in Beijing, ahead of Steliana Nistor or Sandra Izbasa. She, Izbasa and Nistor would be formidable on balance beam in team finals, for example. Sub in Gabriela Dragoi for Izbasa on uneven bars, and put Anamaria Tamarjan in for Patrascu on floor.

Beyond all that, Patrascu possesses an elegance, maturity and style rarely seen in Romanian gymnastics. To put it the way the American commentators might, Patrascu’s lines, knees and toepoint are indicators of the “international look” that appeals to World Championship/Olympic judges.

That’s been a rarity in Romanians in general since the early 1990s, and includes the Romanian gymnastics of this quad, where the beam and floor choreography has been more minimal and more cookie-cutter than ever.