This past September was extremely important month for people interested in what is often considered to be the most elegant, beautiful and graceful of sports. Lots of lovely girls with their coaches arrived in the city of Izmir, Turkey to demonstrate their excellence, tenacity and what they have learned from a full season of training.
The competition, which took place over seven days, from September 21 to September 28, was a massive celebration for the athletes, their relatives, thier coaches and, of course, all of the fans.
It was a week which showcased the princess of all sports: rhythmic gymnastics! In this competition there were 132 individual athletes were performing in four distinct disciplines: hoop, ball, clubs and ribbon. As well, medals were given given our to the atheletes in all-around and in the finals.
Lets talk about the most outstanding girls from this year’s championship. It must be said that Russian gymnists Yana Kudryavtseva and Margarita Mamun were competing against each other, both being at least head and shoulders above all the other girls.
Mamun won a silver medal lacking only 0.167 of a point compared to the gold medalist Kudryavtseva. However, the triumph of this championship was Ukrainian athlete Ganna Rizatdinova who demonstrated her durability and showcased some absolutely beautiful compositions. Judges gave her high scores and she got a well deserved bronze medal.
Later, in an interview, Rizatdinova said that she considered this medal to be as good as a gold one. All the audience, photographers, staff and people involved in this tremendous event said that all of the gymnasts representing Ukraine were greeted as heroes with loud and continuous applaus.
Another girl who was creating miracles on the carpet was Melitina Stanuta from Belarus.
This charming girl succeeded in making each perfomance into little theatre performances from the 90 seconds given to each apparatus.
The favourite of the audience (and not just for this year) was Son Yon Jae representing Korea. Jae surprised her fans by putting together a strong performance that showcased all her tricks and risks.
But, the surprise discovery of the entire championship was a Canadian gymnast by the name of Patricia Bezzoubenko. She is currently only 17 years old, but she is progressing extremely fast up the international rankings and in this championship she was in the list of 20 best gymnasts which is a huge success.
Her coaches, Svetlana Zhukova and choreographer Daria Kondakova, already have big hopes for her future in the sport. And even at her young age, she already holds the honour of being two time Canadian National Champion. In fact, many believe that Bezzoubenko will be able to fight for an Olympic medal in the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro.
Let’s hope that next year, when the championship is held in Stuttgart, Germany, Bezzoubenko will be able to fight for one of the World Championship medals. But for now I want to wish to every girl who was competing lots of health, fortitude and faith.
It is also important to note that competition in Izmir did not only take place in the individual disciplines, but also in groups too. This, however, is a completely different story.
Written with the assistance of Kristina Kislyk