Posts Tagged ‘Zhou Zhuoru’

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 .

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:

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:

Difficulty, execution and a high dose of humor

October 17, 2007

Presenting Difficulty Plus Execution, a humorous and insightful blog that takes “a rather superficial look into women’s gymnastics.”

Its editor, Northernriver, is knowledgable and willing to express things many gymnastics fans probably think but don’t say out loud.

Difficulty Plus Execution on Shawn Johnson’s Ellen appearance:

Ellen is one funny lady. But if Shawn says “It’s such an honor” one more time, I’m going to scream. Or get her a speech writer.

On China’s He Ning:

She is not the best Chinese gymnast of this quadrennium (even if she did win the all-around title at the 2006 Asian Games in Doha, Qatar) – but she certainly is the funniest. And to me, humor is quite important. Makes me like the kid a whole lot.

Things that He Ning Has Done:

1. Putting bunny ears on Alicia Sacramone’s head during a coaches’ picture-taking frenzy

2. Snarking at Yang Yilin while preparing the uneven bars for her during the team final (Yang looked mildly offended, much to my amusement)

3. Screeching excitedly, and rather tactlessly, behind Beth Tweddle when Yang Yilin eked into the medals for uneven bars event finals

4. Putting on a silly New Year’s skit with Zhou Zhuoru, dressed in Qing dynasty drag.

And just about the best thing ever: As Rick at Gymnastics Coaching phrased it, “Alicia Sacramone punching out some dude. Awesome!”

Love it. Absolutely love it.

(Via Difficulty Plus Execution, Gymnastics Coaching)