Posts Tagged ‘Cerasela Patrascu’

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.

Isabelle Severino — torn Achilles tendon

April 3, 2008

Isabelle Severino at the 2006 World ChampionshipsLooks like Isabelle Severino will not be participating in her third Olympic Games.

The 2005 European floor champion, a few days shy of her 28th birthday, tore her Achilles tendon warming up a full-in on floor during European Championships team qualification today, International Gymnast Magazine reported.

It’s a huge moral loss for France. Severino, a stalwart of the French national team for more than a decade, is also a highly capable all-around competitor. She’s taken the path less traveled in her career, working for Cirque du Soleil before returning to elite gymnastics for the 2004 Olympic Games. Severino was also the acrobatics behind Missy Peregrym’s Haley Graham in the 2005 gymnastics movie Stick It.

Romania, despite an injury to Cerasela Petrascu, was the highest team finisher in the qualifying round, blowing Russia off the mats by more than five points. Russia was without veteran Yulia Lozhechko, who reportedly is suffering from the flu.