The Dutch Invitational took place in Duiven over the weekend of 9 and 10 September 2017. This competition was the 2nd part of the Dutch Team 2017 Worlds trials and an invitational for gymnasts from Great Britain, Belgium, Spain and Israel. On Saturday the gymnasts competed in an all around/ qualifications meet, while Sunday was the events finals competition.
In the first day of competition the gold medal went to Alice Kinsella (Great Britain) with a total of 51.550, followed by Ana Perez (Spain) (50.950) and Charlie Fellows (Great Britain) (50.800). Local favorite Eythora Thorsdottir placed 5th with a disappointing all around total of 49.35.
In the second day, after the first two rotations and event finals (bars and vault), the competition was stopped for the 2017 Worlds Dutch team announcement. Eythora was announced first, as she had managed to score 54.850 all around (the requirement was 54.700), at the verification last weekend. Sanne Wevers was announced next and the team coordinator had kind words for her and her staying around for another year. Her sister Lieke was mentioned third, with the explanation that she provides good potential for the future of the team with the goal Tokyo 2020 and that they want to encourage her to stick to gymnastics. Last was Tisha Volleman who competed vault and floor very well; her strengths compliment the ones of her other three team mates. So here is the team:
Eythora Thorsdottir – all around
Sanne Wevers – beam
Lieke Wevers – beam
Tisha Volleman – vault and floor
Eythora was entering this competition with the certainty that she had earned spot in the Worlds team, after achieving last week the mandatory all around score. But she was looking to gain some consistency with her new skills on bars, to consolidate her balance beam and rehearse her new choreography on floor. Unfortunately she had a fall on each event except for vault, on both days of competition. So with a 1/7 hit routines, experience is her most important achievement this weekend (not that there is anything wrong with that). However, I don’t think this will matter in any way at Worlds. We saw some fantastic parts of routines on all three events and everything can come together with some more numbers under her belt. I still feel like she can be a threat to the all around podium (a bronze is not out of question on a good day, as her real all around potential is closer to a 56), but she could also potentially medal on beam. On this event she demonstrated nice flow throughout the routine, but will have to fix her landing before worlds (missed her foot and fell during the event finals).
Lieke Wevers won beam, her only event, Aliya Mustafina style: despite showing the shakiest practice runs and spending a good half of the warm-up on balance training on one foot. During the routine Lieke was focusing on fixing her tuck jump off the side of the beam and side saltos and lost a little bit of her usual flow, but at a 5.6 difficulty she has a competitive routine.
Sanne Wevers also competed only on beam. She has upgraded her mount to a round-off aerial walkover which she did not successfully complete, which caused a scary fall with her back on the beam. This ruined her focus for the rest of the routine (fell again on a side aerial). Still, Sanne has plenty of experience and with a 6.1 difficulty potential, if she stays on beam and hits all her connection, she can still win back to back the Olympic and World title on the event.
The steadiest Duch woman competing in Duiven was Tisha Volleman: on vault she competed a superb Yurchenko double full and a clean pike Podkopayeva (14.134 average). On floor she had strong tumbling with whip full in, triple full, 1 1/2 to punch front and attempted an interesting pirouette connection, Gomez to double turn. Her dance, although dynamic and original, lacked a bit of polish at times and she lost a couple of tenths on execution.
The British team with some of the team members that are less frequently in the spotlight (as my friend Emma said). Georgia Mae Fenton showcased her killer bars skills winning the respective event final (13.733/5.5). Charlie Fellows finished third on the same event and 5th on beam. Phoebe Turner impressed me with her double twisting Yurchenko, which together with an easier vault (front double tuck), brought her a bronze on vault. Alice Kinsella was queen of consistency, placing 4th on bars and beam and 2nd on floor. After the silver medal in the all around the previous day, a second day of clean routines gives high hopes for her future.
Ana Perez was also very consistent during event finals, managing 3 routines in the 13s and earning medals for each final she competed in: silver on bars and beam and bronze on floor. Her floor choreo was one of the highlights of the competition, her flamenco dance looks very authentic yet it’s extremely well integrated in gymnastics routine, achieving a perfect balance between gymnastics and dance.
Video playlist form the 2nd day:
Here are the complete results:
1 Tisha Volleman 14.134 / 5.4 4.8 2 Elze Geurts 13.65 / 5.0 4.2 3 Phoebe Turner 13.567 / 5.4 4.0 4 Ofir Netzer 13.484 / 4.8 4.8
1 Georgia-Mae Fenton 13.733/5.5 2 Ana Perez 13.500 / 5.7 3 Charlie Fellows 13.133/5.4 4 Alice Kinsella 13.067 / 5.1 5 Eythora Thorsdottir 12.667 / 5.5 6 Elze Geurts 12.500 / 4.8 7 Paula Raya 12.500 / 5.2 8 Nora Fernandez 11.900 / 5.1
1 Lieke Wevers 13.667 / 5.6 2 Eythora Thorsdottir 13.067 / 5.8 2 Ana Perez 13.067 / 5.2 4 Alice Kinsella 13.033 / 5.6 5 Charlie Fellows 12.533 / 4.8 6 Sanne Wevers 12.167 / 6.1 7 Nora Fernandez 11.567 / 5.2 8 Paula Raya 10.367 / 4.6
1 Tisha Volleman 13.433 / 5.2 2 Alice Kinsella 13.200 / 5.3 3 Ana Perez 13.000 / 5.3 4 Eythora Thorsdottir 12.667 / 5.5 5 Phoebe Turner 12.600 / 4.9 6 Ofir Kremer 12.367 / 4.5 7 Elze Geurts 12.033 / 3.9
Qualifications / All Around Final
Article & Photo: Bea Gheorghisor