Posts Tagged ‘Pang Panpan’

Chinese women’s team is…

July 25, 2008

The rumors were true. International Gymnast Magazine has confirmed that Cheng Fei, Jiang Yuyuan, Li Shanshan, Yang Yilin, He Kexin and Deng Linlin will represent team China in Beijing.

Team captain Cheng is the only returning 2004 Olympian but also the lone member of the 2006 World Championship-winning squad.

In China, gymnasts seem to flame out faster than they do elsewhere — perhaps it’s the emergence of stunning new talent like He and Deng that makes it that much harder to stay at the top.

Yang Yilin, 2008 Tianjin World Cup Event Finals, Uneven Bars:

Like the Chinese men’s squad named earlier, this is a dream team — if they can all hit in team finals. China’s reputation there is sketchy. If they hit in event finals, the Chinese could sweep the gold medals.

Whether they win team gold or not, China has certainly locked up the depth prize this quad. Talk about a country whose B team could challenge for a medal –not making the final Olympic cut was Olympic veteran Zhang Nan, artistic Sui Lu, snazzy Pang Panpan, powerful Xiao Sha, and 2006 World team members Zhou Zhuoru, He Ning .

More floor: East vs. West, artistic routines with five passes

May 18, 2008

They said it couldn’t be done, and maybe it can’t. But China’s Sui Lu comes pretty darn close to doing an artistic floor routine packed with five tumbling passes.

Sui Lu, 2008 Chinese Championships, Floor Exercise:

Sui gave an impressive performance on all events at the recent Chinese Championships, where she was first on balance beam and tied with the great Cheng Fei for gold on floor exercise. Sui keeps this up, she could well land on the Chinese Olympic team.

Chinese floor choreography has really been Westernized since the 2000 Olympic Games. Now, with the new floor routines from Cheng Fei and Jiang Yuyuan, we’re seeing it shift Eastward again.

The Old: Ling Jie, 1999 International Team Championships, Floor Exercise:

The New: Pang Panpan, 2006 World Championships All-Around, Floor Exercise:

The Newer: Jiang Yuyuan, 2008 Doha World Cup Finals, Floor Exercise:

Chinese Nationals: Quick hits

May 7, 2008

Cheng FeiCheng Fei: 16.1 on vault (Fei)
Jiang Yuyuan: 16.1 on vault (Amanar)
He Kexin: 17.3 on bars
Yang Yilin: 17.05 on bars
Pang Panpan: 16.15 on bars
Li Shanshan: 16.95 on balance beam

Granted, this is from an internal meet. Makes one think that we’re going to be seeing some similiar scores come U.S. Nationals in June.

(via International Gymnast Magazine Online)

Other videos from Beijing Test Event

December 6, 2007

China's Pang PanpanSo you’ve seen all the videos of Cheng Fei winning almost everything in sight at the recent Beijing Test Event. Now see how the other half did.

Youtube user Rainfalling has linked several performances recorded from the stands at the 2007 Good Luck Beijing International Invitational.

Among them are the performances of almost 2006 World Champion Pang Panpan and Zhou Zhuoru.

This user also has videos of the much less publicized 2007 Shanghai Test Event, which took place earlier this year. There one of Jiang Yuyuan taking two spills off the uneven bars during what appears to be training. The look on her face after her dismounts is priceless — like a kid who got caught with her hand in the cookie jar.

Pang Panpan, 2007 Good Luck Beijing International Invitational, Floor Exercise:

Jiang Yuyuan, 2007 Shanghai Test Event Training, Uneven Bars:

Joura charges to lead at Good Luck Beijing Invitational

November 28, 2007

Australian Daria Joura is on a roll.

Australian Daria Joura is coming on strong as 2007 draws to a close.

Fresh off her floor exercise gold at last month’s DBT Cup, Joura is leading the field after the preliminary round of competition at the Good Luck Beijing International Invitational, otherwise known as the Beijing Test Event.

The Invitational is being treated like a mini-Olympics, which in some ways it is. All it really needs is more of the world’s top competitiors, but enough impact gymnasts are there to make it interesting.

Second behind Joura by a little less than half a point is American rookie Bridget Sloan, the designated alternate of the Super Seven Stuttgart group, while 2007 Worlds competitor Jiang Yuyuan is third.

The competition is also the comeback ground of 2005 World Champion Chellsie Memmel (fourth after preliminaries) and 2006 almost World Champion Pang Panpan (fifth, competing exhibition only.)

Chellsie Memmel

Both sat out the 2007 Worlds nursing injuries, but both could have a huge impact this summer — provided they make their respective Olympic teams.

The Romanian effort continues to be shockingly subpar. Top Romanian qualifier Andreea Grigoire is sitting in 16th place after scoring only a 54.975 over four events.

China’s Cheng Fei was the top qualifier on vault (15.15) and floor exercise (15.0), while 2007 European bars champion Daria Zgoba qualified first on that event (15.8). Memmel earned the highest score on balance beam (15.525).

China's Cheng Fei

(via International Gymnast Online)

Elizarova: Beijing spoiler?

November 21, 2007

Of all the Russian juniors who seem to have disappeared off the face of the Earth, I wonder most about 16-year-old Daria Elizarova, who was on the start list for the 2007 World Championships but did not compete.

Elizarova’s toepoint and presentation are reminiscent of the great Lilia Podkopayeva’s.

Lilia Podkopayeva, 1996 Olympic Games All-Around, Floor Exercise:

Daria Elizarova, 2006 Junior European Championships Team Final, Floor Exercise:

The obvious competitiors for all-around gold in Athens have presented themselves: Shawn Johnson, Nastia Liukin, Vanessa Ferrari, Jade Barbosa, Steliana Nistor and Pang Panpan if she’s in her 2006 form.

Gymnastics fans will now spend the winter months exhausting every possible upset scenario before the American Cup in March gives a better picture of how things stand.

Elizarova, who will be competing at the mini-Olympics that the Good Luck Beijing test event is turning into, should be scenario number one.

China’s 2008 contenders

October 31, 2007

China's Zhou Zhuoru

The U.S. commentators didn’t think too much of her at the 2006 American Cup, but China’s Zhou Zhuoru likely made a bold statement about her ability to perform in big competitions at the DTB Cup in Stuttgart last weekend.

Zhou Zhuoru, 2006 American Cup, Uneven Bars:

The Americans seemed to a little more respect for Zhou after she was part of the team that toppled the U.S. at the 2006 Worlds.
Zhou Zhuoru, 2007 American Cup, Floor Exercise:

Zhou’s gold on balance beam and bronze on uneven bars at the DBT might be somewhat vindicating to the woman who is, in all honesty, probably classified as a “second-team gymnast” by others besides Tim Daggett. She given that she was designated the alternate for the 2007 World Championships in favor of less experienced teammates Li Shanshan, Jiang Yuyuan, Yang Yilin and Xiao Sha.

As International Gymnast Magazine put it, Zhouru’s performance “helped her Olympic cause.”

Exactly right. Although it’s extremely fun to discuss who’s on the bubble for making the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team (Memmel? Bieger? Hong? Peszek? Sloan? Everyone who isn’t Shawn Johnson or Nastia Liukin?) I’m wondering who’s on the bubble in other countries, particularly China, and Zhou is certainly one.

Compared to the 2006 Worlds, where the women won their first team gold and Pang Panpan became the first Chinese woman since Mo Huilan to almost walk away with a world all-around title, the Chinese performance in Stuttgart was probably something of a mixed bag.

Chinese newspapers made a lot of the fact that while the Chinese took home eight golds in Aarhus, they managed — horrors — only five in Stuttgart. Chinese coaches have pledged to up the difficulty of their gymnasts’ routines for Beijing.

China retained only two athletes — He Ning and Cheng Fei — from its golden 2006 squad, partially due to injuries and partially to give Li, Jiang, Yang and Xiao a chance to prove their abilities on gymnastics’ second largest international stage.

Whether or not they really did is a matter that hasn’t been explored too closely, except probably by the Chinese coaches. What is apparent is that the Chinese rivals the U.S.’s in depth – and not just on beam and bars.

China’s legitimate shots to make the women’s Olympic team include:

— Pang Panpan:

China's Pang Panpan

— Zhang Nan:

China's Zhang Nan

— Zhou Zhuoru:

China's Zhou Zhuoru

— Cheng Fei:

China's Cheng Fei

— Li Ya:

China's Li Ya

— He Ning:

China's He Ning

— Xiao Sha:

China's Xiao Sha

— Yang Yilin:

China's Yang Yilin

— Li Shanshan:

China's Li Shanshan

— Jiang Yuyuan:

China's Jiang Yuyuan

I’m sure there are others I’ve left out.

And now, a barrage of amazing Chinese gymnastics from this quad’s Olympic contenders and past Chinese greats: