Sunday, October 31, 2010


Sorry I've been AWOL since yesterday's appearances. Places to be, people to see, concerts to watch, cakes to bake.

Lauren Mitchell did indeed appear on both Hey Hey It's Saturday and Nine's Wide World of Sports this weekend. Gymnastics Australia has provided videos of both tv spots.

It's been an exhausting two days for our world champion but she has represented the sport, her club and her family exceptionally. We couldn't ask for a better amassador for gymnastics. Kudos to Lauren for her patience, poise and positive attitude.

New articles can also be read here and here.

The 19-year-old was mobbed by hundreds of young gymnastics devotees when she hit the tarmac, prompting a friend to quip: ''Wow, you're the female Justin Bieber!''

However, Mitchell won't be selling out in an attempt to cash in on her name. ''The part that we really want to leverage is talking to teenage girls about their own self-esteem and keeping it real for them - issues like body image,'' Graeme Mitchell said.


Tuesday 9th November – 2.30 pm – 4.30 pm – Part 1 - Fox Sports 2

Wednesday 10th November – 2.30 pm – 4.30 pm – Part 2 - Fox Sports 2

Thursday 11th November – 12.00 pm – 2.00 pm – Part 3 - Fox Sports 2

Friday 12th November – 1.00 pm-3.00 pm – Part 4 - Fox Sports 2

- Thanks for the heads-up, Emma!

(PS It was a jack-o-lantern cake!)

Saturday, October 30, 2010

AGB Meets Team Australia

Well, I said I'd go today, "rain, hail or shine" and boy did it rain!

It was a little hectic inside the VWHPC because it was also Squad Photo Day, so young gymmies were running to and from the autograph table in between doing poses in front of a grey backdrop. The gym has a brand new floor mat, big and blue and bouncy as you'd expect it to be.

Ash, Georgia and Lauren were seated (in that order) at a table in front of a GA banner, signing printed-out pictures in their Australia t-shirts and trackies.

I managed to snap a pic of Britt and G-Bro standing nearby watching Ashleigh. All the gymnasts would cheerfully ask for name spellings and sign leotards, t-shirts and autograph books as well as the proffered photos. Gymmums were also handing out little flyers, reminding people to vote for Lauren in the Sports Performer awards (see previous post).

It was finally my turn and I did my usual star-struck gabble. I honestly don't know how to exude coolness and calm when it is needed. I didn't ask to get photos WITH the gymnasts this time but I did make sure I let them know there were lots of us who'd followed their competitions late into the night and once again "nearly broke the internet with our celebrations". I also made mention of those overseas fans who were excited with Team Australia's wins (told you I would, Robin!) and each girl was chuffed to hear there was an international following. And Lauren was REALLY amazed to hear that last year's 260 Facebook fans had been trumped by this year's 1,500!

I also managed to tap Michelle from JumpMedia on the shoulder and thank her very sincerely for events like this one, and for 'going in to bat' for the gymnasts at Delhi airport during that whole media blackout shermozzle, and for basically providing excellent resources for fans and enthusiasts during competitions. She was very touched.

Now, the interesting factoid I learned was that today's apperance was planned as something different- In its early stages, was intended for Lauren to pop on a leo and do some training alongside the VWHPC gymnasts and the day would act as an open session from which the public could wander in and out. But there were problems with getting Lauren into Victoria on time, so an autograph session it was to be.

It was a great day, I just hope not too many people got saturated on the way home like me.

Thanks to the HPC for opening its doors again, and to all at Gymnastics Australia/JumpMedia for organising such a great event for fans.

Oh yeah - 'that' medal.

Lauren proudly lay it down it on the table when one little girl asked to see it. It outshone absolutely everybody in the room, sitting pretty on its (naturally) orange ribbon.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Team Australia Meet and Greet

GA and JumpMedia confirm Lauren Mitchell's appearance in Melbourne this weekend!

She will be joined at the VWHPC by Delhi/Rotterdam teammates Ashleigh Brennan and Georgia Wheeler. She'll be doing some other pretty snazzy media appearances too.

Saturday 30thHey Hey its Saturday (Red Faces judge)
Estimated time of appearance 8.30pm

Saturday 30thFox Sports News (Live Interview)
Estimated time of appearance 9.40pm

Sunday 31stWide World of Sports (Live Interview)
Estimated time of appearance 10.30am

Whilst in town, Lauren, will be joined by fellow world and Commonwealth Games team members Ashleigh Brennan and Georgia Wheeler for a special autograph signing opportunity. Unfortunately Georgia Bonora is still overseas and won’t be in Melbourne this weekend to join her team mates.

The autograph signing will take place as follows:-

When: Saturday 30th October
Where: Victorian Women’s High Performance Centre
Corner of Green and Thomas St
Prahran, VIC 3181

12.30 – 1.30 pm

We highly recommend coming down to the VWHPC on Saturday between 12.30 pm and 1.30 pm to meet Lauren, Ashleigh and Georgia, and get their autographs. This is a fantastic opportunity to meet the girls, and congratulate them for their results in person!

Hope some of you can make it this time around! Last year was fun, but not so fun on my lonesome!

(ETA: Travel safe into Prahran, it's supposed to absolutely bucket down on Saturday!)

Breaking - Lauren has yet again been nominated for Sports Performer of the Year! But this time, she's not a 'young' sports performer - she's up there with the big guns!

See the nominees here. Follow the link to make your vote count!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Where To Now?

Two of the year's biggest events are done and dusted. So what's next for Team Australia?

1. Combs La Ville, France 5-6 November
Attendees - TBA (2 teams)
Site -

2. Massilia Gym Cup, France 12-14 November
Attendees- Georgia Rose Brown, Nikola Chung, Natalia Joura, Georgia Simpson (Team Massilia)
Alex Eade, Laura Hingston, Zoe Lorenzin, Svetlana Sanders (Open Massilia)
Site -

3. Stuttgart DTB-Pokal World Cup, Germany 12-14 November
Attendees- Lauren Mitchell
Site -

4. Glasgow Grand Prix, UK 18-21 November
Attendees - Lauren Mitchell
Site -

5. National Clubs Championship, Canberra 20 November - 1 December
Site -

****GA tweeted tonight that Lauren will be in Melbourne very soon for a meet-and-greet. Stay tuned! (Hopefully it'll be somewhere a bit more fan-friendly than the VWHPC...?)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


For those of you who missed the medal ceremony, skip to the end of this video...

(I think it's interesting that they used a version of the anthem that included lyrics rather than an instrumental)

And here is her 'homecoming' (along with Emily and Georgia's, of course) as shown on Nine News:

It also features here at FoxSportsNews (includes extended video).

Print press coverage here and here.

"Maybe a few more people will recognise me around and about but my life's still going to be the same.

"I guess I didn't get the whole extremity of everything because I was away (from Australia when I won the gold medal) and I think everyone back here got the full force of it.

"And so coming back on the end of it, everyone's like 'oh my god!', and I'm like 'what?'"

Get used to it, sister-girlfriend. That medal's going to take you places!

As her journey ends, so does my coverage of Delhi and Rotterdam.

Thanks everyone for logging on, dropping in, stopping by and popping past. It's been the best fun I've had in a long time, and I know it'll take a longer time to wipe this huge grin off my face.

Additional thanks to every single source on the scene at both big competitions for taking the time to capture Aussie gymnasts in action. We appreciate all the information you have shared and the effort you went to in order to share it.

What an amazing month of gymnastics for Australia!

Glad to have been one small part of it.

Monday, October 25, 2010


What a day, my friends, what a day! All hail THE POWER OF LOZ!


I'm told that up in WA, Lauren is the first item in many radio and television sports segments. She also got a double page spread in MX today, yahoo! I am also told she featured heavily on Melbourne radio today (especially evening sports programs), everyone's regarding her as an inspirational story worth telling!

(One thing I've forgotten in all this is to give a shout-out to Stacey Umeh - choreographer of the 2010 WORLD'S NUMBER ONE FLOOR ROUTINE!!!)

JumpMedia have uploaded news segments featuring Lauren from ABC and Nine.

Relive the golden moment again (and again and again) thanks to Mariane:

Lauren's post-meet interiew is shown from a slightly different angle here (with a very cute start).

How has THE POWER OF LOZ helped you today?

Has she been a conversation starter? A bond-builder? A smile-bringer? She was certainly a conversation starter for me at work today, several people who remembered I follow gymnastics asked me what I thought of the news!

Here is my soundtrack for the day:

* Loz Will Bring Us Together
* Baby Loz
* Stop! In The Name of Loz
* Everlasting Loz
* All You Need is Loz
* No Other Loz
* Crazy Little Thing Called Loz
* It Must Have Been Loz
* Best of My Loz
* Loz is a Many Splendoured Thing
* Hot Loz

Awesome article in The Age here. It's by Greg Baum who did the profile on Lauren after last year's Worlds.

''I wanted to prove on the floor that I belonged in the top three,'' she said. ''I wanted to prove to the judges that Australia is up there with the world.''

As a rule, gymnasts don't trash nightclubs to celebrate. Mitchell said she and her teammates had resolved beforehand to watch the horror movie Saw, and ''pull an all-nighter''. ''We didn't last!'' she said.

Gymnastics Australia has a full wrap-up of Lauren press as well as additional quotes. Here's hoping her homecoming makes the news, too!

If you see a small letter in the Herald Sun this week by "Michelle of Nunawading"... let me just say you all know her VERY VERY VERY WELL. *shifty eyes*

Rotterdam 2010: Apparatus Finals Day 2 Wrap-Up

What's to wrap up? Except WOOOOOOOOOHOOOOOOOO!!!!

(Mark Baretta gave her a Twitter shout-out. I responded (along the lines of "I was one of many up late watching her, she is an inspiration!") so here's hoping my message makes the telly if they mention her again.

We shall have to shift Lauren Mitchell Day, methinks!

Lauren's reaction here as well as here.

The best moment for her? "It's pretty amazing seeing the Australian flag being risen," she said. On Peggy Liddick: "She's been an amazing coach throughout my whole campaign," Mitchell enthused. "She's been great support. Everyone's been fantastic."

Media here and here and here plus Couch Gymnast's on-the-scene coverage here.

"I think I nearly started crying. It didn't feel like my routine was so good but obviously it was. It's kind of surreal at the moment.

"I've been pushing and pushing and pushing and finally I've got it!"

Thanks to Gymnastike, here is Lauren's routine:

And (hankies at the ready, SHE GETS APPLAUDED AS SHE WALKS IN!) here is Lauren's interview with Gymnastike afterwards:

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"I really need to think of a new word other than amazing, no it’s fantastic! Coming from the beginning of the year and not competing at any events until the Commonwealth Games, it is a fantastic feeling."



If you see Lauren in the news today, drop me a line!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Rotterdam 2010: Apparatus Finals Day 2 LIVE!

Best of luck to Lauren.

Quick Hits: Gymnastics Examiner or the twitters listed below
Facebook: International Gymnast or Brigid Couch Gymnast McCarthy
Twitter: Ozgymblog, Gymnastike, IntlGymnast


Am having difficulty finding a feed but will update you when I do.

Apparently Lauren's warm-ups are looking good, she appears to be working extremely hard (especially on her beam series). Live updates from the arena are coming from The Gymnastics Examiner, see the link above.

Best shot so far is the ten-minutes delayed Georgian television feed here:

Do I hear any advance on Georgian television?

11:29 looks like the men's vault final is over, bring on the women!

BB: Loz up after Sacramone. 11:33 AEDST They've marched in!
11:39 Right. Here goes. Reports say: SHE HIT THE LAYOUT!

Mitchell (AUS) : her mount, flic – flic – layout to 2 feet, split – wolf jump, 3/1 cossak turn, switch leap ½ (wobble) – back tuck, free aerial – switch leap – front somi, switch ring leap (step), ff – ff – double pike off (hop fwd).

"A huge smile and a little skip as she leaves the podium" = Awwww!

D: 6.6; E: 8.600; 15.200 into first place for now!

EDIT: After some very strong performances, Lauren finishes outside of the medals in 4th place. Her 15.200 was a fantastic score (her best of the competition I believe?) and proof she can hit when it counts. Onya Loz! Good luck for floor.

Veetle feed is up! Currently doing a beam wrap-up (on slight delay I think). I think it's the BBC feed! great quality footage and information from Tweddle/Smith on each event.

FX: Up last, hope she can control her nerves. It has been a HUGE three weeks for her.

24:55 AEDST they've marched in but we're not seeing the intros. Beth gives a shout-out to Lauren as a medal chance.

Loz in the crimson/black 2009 Worlds prelim leo. Here goes...

HITS the arabiab stag! Big hope back on piked full in wolf turn a tad messy AWESOME 2.5 to layout. Hops back on double pike but WOWZERS great job.

Waves to the team she can hear in the stands.










BBC are doing talking heads over the medal ceremony but you can hear the crowd go NUTS for her in the background as she is announced!

Ah, they cut to the dais as the anthem starts - Julie Anthony methinks!

Peggy singing and BAWLING, Lauren sparkly-eyed

We see the Aussie team (guys and girls) in the stands going nuts

aaaaand my feed cut out.

Rotterdam 2010: Apparatus Finals Day 2 Preamble

We farewell Rotterdam tonight with the last night of apparatus finals and one more shot at Aussie gold. Lauren Mitchell is in action in both the women's finals tonight. She is looking to equal (or better) her silver medals on both events at the 2009 World Championships.


You can see the event start list here. Lauren's up second on beam and last(!) on floor.

The finals kick off at 11pm AEDST (2pm Rotterdam time) so, if you're like me, tune in after the finale of Sherlock. I am not paid to promote the show. I just love it.

*** I have taken down the Veetle feed link because there has been some confusion and someone at Veetle is under the impression that I am personally providing the feed. Through here. I'm not! I was just linking to the place where there was a feed last night, I thought it was a permanent thing. Err... sorry. I machines no work good. If I find something else, I'll post it here.

Rotterdam 2010: Finals Day 1 Wrap-Up

What a smashing result for Australia! Prashanth Sellathurai becomes, albeit without an actual World title, our most decorated World Championship competitor with 3 world championship medals (1 silver, 2 bronze) now under his belt.

Kudos must be given to Prashanth for what we are told was courage under difficult circumstances - he competed last night under strain of a hand injury!

Read GA's wrap-up here.

"It’s always nice to medal at the world championships. I’m very grateful as it could have very easily not happened. It would be a dream to get a world title one day, and hopefully the day is not too far off.”

Gymnastike (who for some reason have spelled his name "PENSTRATH" which is annoying and yet totally hilarious so forgive me for making it his new nickname) have an interview up here.


Saturday, October 23, 2010

Rotterdam 2010: Apparatus Finals Day 1

Best wishes to Australia's sole representative in the first night of appratus finals, Prashanth Sellathurai.

Prashanth will be competing second in the final and is looking to equal (or better) his bronze medal from London 2009.

10:00pm AEDST (1:00pm Rotterdam time) should be when the action kicks off.

The start list for the final (plus the other finals startlists) is here.

You can follow a live feed from the event here. It worked very well last night!


Try here for a good quality SportTV feed.

The boys have marched out - Prash is definitely the shortest one there. By a lot! He'll once again be facing stiff competition from Smith of Great Britain and Berki of Hungary.

Berki's up first, then our little fella.

Here we go! Works extremely quickly but maintains good form throughout. Leg form erros going into the dismount but sticks it.

"Circles, to cscissors to HS, russians between pommels, stockli on one pommel , stockli, spindle on the side, Wu Guonian (high), russians on the end, Magyar, Sivado, 2/1 pirouette to dismount. Good. D : 6.6; E : 8.966 ; 15.566"

European commentators call him "spectacularrrrrr!!!" Got a handshake from the Slovenian as he left the podium.

15.566 goes into second. (6.6 a-score). Aussie supporters in the crowd are cheering and chanting!

Louis Smith bumps Prash into 3rd... can he cling on for the bronze???

Results are in...


Big hug and kind words from Berki. Prashanth defends his bronze from London!


Rotterdam 2010: WAG All-Around Final Wrap-Up

Another successful night for Australia with two top-15 AA finishes (and a second consecutive top-6 finish for Lauren Mitchell... I'm pretty sure not even Allana, Monette or Dasha could boast that statistic).

GA has a release here.

"I guess tonight went pretty well,” said Mitchell, “It was a good normal competition."
Interviews with Lauren and Georgia thanks to Gymnastike.

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Friday, October 22, 2010

Rotterdam 2010: WAG All-Around Final LIVE!

See previous posts for links to live coverage.

I amended my previous to say - tune in at 4:30am.


4:25m- hallloooooooo nightowls!


Bonora in London AA leo, rotating with John.
Lauren also in London AA leo, my guess is she's rotating with Nikolai

(Sorry, I've had to abandon livetweeting)

UB Mitchell: Hecht mount, stadler ½ - Jaeger, toe on 1/1 – overshoot, double front off. 5.5/13.900

BB: Bonora: wolf jump, switch leap – back tuck, free aerial – flic – layout (wobble), onodi, side somi, side aerial, switch ring leap, turn, ro – double pike off (jump back). 6.0/14.466

Peggy makes an appearance as the gymnasts march to rotation 2.
ETA: Looks like she'll be overseeing Lauren on beam.

Georgia 7th after one rotation

BB Mitchell: We heard her announced in the background of Bross UB. "Great save on bhs bhs 2 ft lay!" Ff – ff- layout to 2 feet (wobble), split – wolf jump, 2 ½ cossak, switch ½ - back tuck, frea erial – front somi, switch ring leap, ff- ff- double pike off (squat). 6.5/14.900

FX Bonora: double back, 2/1, 1 ½ through 1/1. Can't seem to find further notes (or a score)

Lauren in 5th after two rotations. She's up first on floor!

FX Mitchell: THEY'RE SHOWING IT! Can't tell if arabian-stag went OOB, it was extremely close. Foot didn't touch the ground as she turned around from the stag leap but may have been considered over. Everything else kept in nicely, crouch turn a tad unsteady! Piked full in, 2.5 to punch front layout, better than we've seen her do. Double pike with small hop. Looks tired but made it through! A nail-biter! 5.8/14.600

VT Bonora: THEY SHOWED IT! Stuckitty stuck Yurch full! 13.966, she looks very happy.

Lauren 6th after 3 rotations

VT Mitchell: DTY 14.733 into third place for now but, barring some miracle, probably won'y stay there. SHOWED ON THE FEED! Legs a bit buckled in the air but STUCK like crazy! Ok, goes into 4th.

UB Bonora: No indication anywhere of what she performed except for the dismount.


(gets a hug from Ariella Kaeslin in the marshalling area... BEST FRIENDS 4EVA LOL)


The top 8 will be presented on the podium so don't touch that dial!


Rotterdam 2010: WAG All-Around Preamble

Yet another early start for us, folks, as we get ready to cheer on Lauren and Georgia in the women's all-around final.

4:30am AEDST is what we're looking at here.

PREPARE: Visit Dutchfan33 OR Gymcat67's YouTube channels for preliminary performances from Lauren and Georgia.

Read this article on Lauren's hopes for the final.

The event start list is available here. Lauren will be starting on bars, Georgia will be starting on beam.

EXPLORE: Gymnastics Australia's team guide.

FOLLOW: Live at a number sources -

Quick Hits: Gymnastics Examiner or the twitters listed below
Facebook: International Gymnast or Brigid Couch Gymnast McCarthy
Twitter: Ozgymblog, Gymnastike, IntlGymnast

Live feed: JustinTV or Rotterdam official feed

DISCUSS: Right here, with me, live, at your AGB. Just keep hittin' that refresh button once the competition gets underway.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Rotterdam 2010: WAG Team Final Wrap-Up

Oh what a (late) night!

Last night held some serious ups and downs but Australia walks away from day 1 of finals competition still sitting pretty among the world's top 8 gymnastics teams.


GA has a score wrap-up here plus addition quotes from Liddick and Mitchell here.

“Our goal for tonight was to maintain our position from the qualifications,” said Liddick. “After a shaky start on beam I am really proud of how the girls performed and how this team has come together since the nationals in July.”

(Sorry for the late notice, but there's a great photo gallery at The Gymnastics Examiner of Australia's prelim round here and addition prelim videos [of quite a good quality] over at GymCat67's youtube channel here)

See post-meet Gymnastike interviews with Ashleigh and Peggy here.

Dutchfan33 is starting to put up videos from the fina; (thankyoooooou!) so keeping checking back at their channel for coverage of the Aussies.

Mariane has posted French coverage of Lauren's beam routine. Merci, Mariane!

Rotterdam 2010: WAG Team Final LIVE!

Good morning. It's just about that time!

Now, the following link was suggested to me for live-streaming:

scroll the channel thumbnails until you find "HTB Sport", apparently they will be showing it live? At the moment it's sport news updates so it could be happening in a few minutes, people!

If it does work... hurrah! And, fittingly, it's GEORGIAN television.


2:00am AEDST The gymnasts are marching in (according to IG)

I am getting nothing from feeds just yet!

ETA- The Georgian feed is working! I think it's on a slight delay?

IG twitter says
Bonora 7.166/12.866 fell on change leg-back tuck combo.

I can see the girls in the background of Ferrari's FX. They're in the leos from CommGames all-around.

Brennan: switch, free aerial – layout, switch 1/1 – back tuck, split jump – wolf jump, side saerial, switch ring leap (step), flic – layout, free cartwheel, side somi, double pike off

Mitchell: her usual mount, flic – flic – layout to 2 feet (fall), split jump – wolf jump, 2 ½ cossak spin, switch ½ leap – back tuck, free aerial – switch leap – front somi, switch ring leap, ff – ff – double pike off.

AUS a shaky start but ahead of Great Britain. GB in 8th (also had a disaster rotation), Aus in 7th after one rotation


Bonora: double back, 2/1, triple spin (beautiful), 1 ½ through 1/1, double pike off.


Brennan: Tsukahara, double back (low chest and big step fwd), double pike off (step). 5.3/13.666

Mitchell: double arabian – scissone, good, piked Tsukahara (a bit low and step fwd), 2 ½ cossak spin, split 1/1 jump, 2 ½ punch layout (tiny step), double pike off (hop).
5.9 14.700


Feed shows Georgia's VT! Yurchenko full with a hop back. She looks happy with it. 13.833

Little DTY 14.866

Mitchell DTY 14.800

Have had to stop my livetweets sorry. Am having all sorts of Twitter problems!


After 3 rotations, Australia in 6th, Great Britain 7th

Bonora: ???

Miller 6.1/14.500

Mitchell UB: stalder blind to jaeger, form issues on toe full to overshoot, toe blind to clean, non-cowboyed dbl front. 5.5/14.100


Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Rotterdam 2010: WAG Team Final Preamble

Who's hunting around in the wardrobe for their excited/nervous trousers!?

Tonight's the big night!

Well, strictly speaking, TOMORROW'S the night but let's not get bogged down in semantics.

2am AEDST!
Eight and something hours' time! IT'S ONNNNNNNN!!!


PREPARE: Visit Dutchfan33's YouTube channel (see previous post) for preliminary performances of Team Australia.

Check out the event start list here. Australia will be rotating with longtime rival Great Britain (boasting Commonwealth Games gold medallist Imogen Cairns). They will be starting on beam.

Read this rather cool pre-final spotlight on the team.

"This team is a very tight-knit team, and we are all looking forward to competing," she said. "We are all confident and ready to show everyone what Australia is made of."

Or these training notes from Couch Gymnast (features Australia).

EXPLORE: Gymnastics Australia's team guide.

FOLLOW: Live at a number sources -

Quick Hits: Gymnastics Examiner or the twitters listed below
Facebook: International Gymnast or Brigid Couch Gymnast McCarthy
Twitter: Ozgymblog, Gymnastike, IntlGymnast

Still working on access to a worthwhile feed. If you get any tip-offs, please send them my way. GA recommends this one. Archived videos are on there at the moment. There should also be something available from BBC, I'll keep you posted.

DISCUSS: Right here, with me, live, at your AGB. Just keep hittin' that refresh button once the competition gets underway.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Rotterdam 2010: PRELIM VIDEOS!

Gratuitous hugs and thanks to Dutchfan who provided the following.


While you can see Emily's floor routine here.


(Click through to Dutchfan's channel to see the rest of Australia on floor)

Rotterdam 2010: MAG Prelims

Weeeellllll call me a stodgy blogger, call me what you will, but I didn't stay up for the men last night (if we could get a live stream it might've been a different story).

GA has a full wrap-up here.

The men are sitting in 12th, so they could very well go through to next year's World Championships (which of course we're hoping for)!

Josh Jefferis is in a nail-biting 20thAA! Only the top 24 will make it to the all-around and there are 6 more subdivisions to go so we'll cross our fingers for him. Prashanth Sellathurai managed a 15.566 on pommel, looking pretty good for a spot in the final.

You can read Blythe Lawrence's live recap of their subdivision here.

In other Aussies-at-Worlds news, read Brigid McCarthy's pre-Rotterdam interview with Georgia Bonora here.

I forgot to add that yesterday marked ONE YEAR since Lauren's historic beam and floor silver medals in London! Happy Belated Lauren Mitchell Day!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Rotterdam 2010: WAG Qualifiers

Australia is confirmed through to the women's team final! They are also automatically through to next year's world championships.

1. Russia 234.521
2. China 233.778
3. United States 233.643
4. Romania 228.495
5. Great Britain 224.921
6. Australia 224.785
7. Italy 219.179
8. Japan 218.895

Congrats girls!

On an additional fantastic note, Lauren Mitchell and Georgia Bonora are into the women's all-around final!

(photo courtesy Brigid McCarthy)

Lauren qualified 5th into both beam and floor finals; Larrissa Miller is the third reserve for the bars final. A fantastic effort by our team members in anyone's book.

Lauren and Larrissa are pictured in todays's Herald Sun sports section (but Lauren is captioned as "Lauren Miller", oops!)

Tonight, our men take to the floor in qualification subdivision 5 at 8pm local time (5am AEDST). They will start on their 'bogey' event, pommel horse. Go boys!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Rotterdam 2010: WAG Prelims Wrap-Up

Houston, we have a scrunchy-nosed laugh!

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Blythe Lawrence has some additional quotes:

[Lauren] noted that before the meet, a judge asked Peggy Liddick how Liddick thought they would do. "224," Liddick said. And indeed, Australia came up with a 224. So Liddick was pleased that her gymnasts met expectations, Mitchell said.

Mitchell said that she feels a bit more like a team leader, given her Olympic and World Championships experience. "I kind of help guide them," she said of her younger teammates. She remembers what it's like to be new on a team and feel like an outsider.

"2007 was kind of a funny year for me," she said. "Even though I was selected for the World team, I didn't feel like part of the gymnastics world. I didn't feel like I really belonged. Then I made beam finals, and I was like, 'oh, maybe I do really belong out here.'"

After one day of qualifications, Australia's sitting in 5th place in the team rankings. A team finals slot looks VERY very real. As does a spot for Lauren in the all-around final. We won't know final standings until the last session (again kicking off this evening) is completed so... hold tight til tomorrow, I guess. Commonwealth rivals Great Britain are currently sitting above Aus, talk about awkwardness!

Read GA's wrap-up here.

Photos from DayLife:

Photos from Couch Gymnast:

Struttin' like a boss.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Rotterdam 2010: WAG Prelims LIVE!

Necessary fuel...

See "coverage" post for links to live quick hits and scores as competition unfolds.

I politely ask that you don't post scores or routine quick hits in Comments as I will already be reading and posting them, as they become available, up here. I heartily welcome discussion (of course) but I don't want my inbox exploding with notifications of things we have already read. Just keep hitting refresh to see updates. Cheers! Enjoy the show.

Women's Qualification start list is available HERE.

IG has put a session 5 preview HERE.

Couch Gymnast's interesting note from training:

Overheard- Peggy Liddick telling Georgia Wheeler (in a joking fashion) "Do one beam set on the floor and concentrate or I will take off my tennis shoe and..." gestures throwing it at her! Funny!

Right. Err... consider the tone set?

5:55pm Rotterdam time - "And here come the athletes!"

Blythe says:

The Aussies, in white and green and gold leos similiar to ones they often wear in international competition, are the only team to swing their arms in that oh-so-gymnast way as they march out.

Bonora: Clean Y-full with a small hop to the side 13.833
Brennan: Clean Tsuk full with a small hop back 13.766
Mitchell: Clean Baitova (IG says 'very nice'!), again a small hop back 14.733
Little: Baitova landed with chest low, small stumble out of it but looked good in air 14.466
Wheeler: Handspring front pike with a big step forward 13.066
Team Total: 56.798

Peggy Liddick looks thrilled and is even kind of joked with her team for a little bit before waving her hand and saying "OK, stop."

Bonora: Jump to high, Comaneci. Clear hip to bail to Ray or toe hecht, full turn, blind, front giant legs apart to stuck double front. "Well well well Australia..." YAAAAAAAY! That last remark made me immeasurably happy. HELLS YEAH BONORA, YOU SHOW 'EM! 13.766!

Little: Toe on, toe on 1/2 tO Jaeger, toe on full, DLO STUCK!. 13.791

Mitchell: Stalder, Jaeger, toe on full, toe on, toe on 1/2, double front with small hop. 13.700

Miller: Straddle toe hecht to high, inbar stalder full to Geinger. Bail to Ray. Inbar stalder blind to Jaeger. Full turn to immediate full twisting double tuck, STUCK! 14.300

Wheeler: Toe stalder to Maloney, had to muscle swinging out of it. Went for a Tkatchev and fell. Bail to Ray, blind, front giant, half turn, full turn, double pike with big step forward. 10.766
Team Total: 55.557

If Peggy Liddick was happy after vault, she must be dancing for joy after bars, even with that fall from Wheeler. More sticks on this event than any team yet, even China!


Little: Wobble on front tuck? Full turn in sit position. Front aerial, bhs, layout, no problem. Switch, back tuck. Switch side. 'Easy' roundoff double tuck with a step. 5.4/13.567

Brennan: Front aerial, switch, Gainer, wonderful! Switch half to back tuck, shouldn't get connection. Split, wolf. Side somie with legs straight. Switch ring. Bhs, layout, perfect. Side aerial, side somie. Not a wobble. Roundoff, double pike, basically stuck. WOW. That was World medal worthy. And worthy of a hug from Peggy. (aka ASH HITS BEAM LIKE A BOSS, WOOOOHOOOO!!!) 5.9/14.300!

Bonora: Switch leap, tuck back, aerial wo ff layout, onodi, aerial cartwheel, pike double dismount 5.8/14.266

Mitchell: Chest stand cartwheel mount. Bhs, bhs to two feet, layout to two feet, had to fight to save it but did. 2.5 turn in sit position. Switch half to back tuck. Front aerial, switch, front flip. Saved switch ring. Two bhs to double pike, covered the step forward by saluting the judges. 6.7/14.966!

Wheeler: Long wait for handstand mount. Forward roll out. Full turn in sit position, a little tentative. Punch front. Bhs, back tuck, solid. Switch, pike. Switch side, a little tentative again. Side somie, small wobble. Two bhs to double pike. She stayed on and finished it well! 5.3/13.366
Team Total: 57.099

Bonora: High double tuck. Very high double full. Switych ring, Tourjete half. Triple full. 1.5 to full twist. Front aerial. Switch half. Double pike, chest low and took a bounce, but hit routine. Not difficult tumbling, but no huge mistake. 5.1/13.400

Little: Full in tucked. Double tuck. Front aerial. Double turn. Tense music. OOB on 1.5 to double full. Switch, switch half. Double pike, landed a bit back and had to take a step forward but saved any catastrophe. 5.2/13.200

Brennan: Stuck full in tucked. Stuck double tuck. Oh my...Aussies are nailing this. Switch ring, switch side half. Front layout, front full, single stag jump. Double pike, small hop forward. (Looking good, ladies!) 5.3/13.833

Miller: Front layout to front double full, really nice. Steps OOB on double pike second pass. Switch ring, Tourjete. Third pass ended well with a punch front. 2.5 to single stag jump to end. 5.3/13.633

Mitchell: OOB on Arabian double pike to single stag. Traveled a little too much. Full in pike. 2.5 turn in sit position. Same routine as 2009. 2.5 to front layout, much better than in training. Tourjete half, crisp. Double pike with a hop back. 5.8/14.466

Overall Team Total: 224.785 and into third place overall!
Go girls!

Concensus in the blogosphere is that they "performed better than Romania" today.
What a ringing endorsemsent! Here's hoping it's good enough for a team finals slot.

As if it's 4:30am right now.


Oh... bugger. It is.

Rotterdam 2010: Coverage

*cue Rocky theme*

The time is upon us!

Here are some links to help you follow the World Championships action.

Pre and post-competition round coverage:

Official website HERE.

Gymnastics Australia's Worlds updates HERE.

Rotterdam YouTube Channel HERE.

Gymnastike video coverage HERE (some Aussies featured here, videos are listed in the left hand frame)

LIVE(!!!) quick hits, scores and observations:

International Gymnast Online's live quick hit links HERE.

The Gymnastics Examiner's live quick hits and scores HERE.

The All-Around's live score tracker HERE

I am hoping a livestream, outside of Universal Sports, will crop up. I will update you all if and when one does. Otherwise, follow GA's link to Universal's coverage for team and AA finals.

The online stream that showed Commonwealth Games ( may show prelims. We'll have to wait and see.

Our WAGs kick off day 1 of competition. They start their preliminary competition on vault in subdivision 5, around 2:00am AEDST (possibly nearer to 3:00).

You bring the bumcushions, I'll bring the industrial strength hot chocolates!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Delhi 2010: Rhythmic Round-Up

aka "Patience, Grasshopper."

A big congratulations to Australia's rhythmic star Naazmi Johnston who collected her second gold medal last night, coming out tops in the all-around final!

And she didn't just beat the Commonwealth's best gymnasts, she beat their insectoid invaders, too!

"A grasshopper decided to throw Johnston a challenge of its own by joining her on the floor during her routine. To her credit, Johnston maintained her composure, completed her routine and ensured that the potential distraction did not derail her chance of victory."
Read more here.

Or here.

Or here.

Fortunately for Johnston she didn't need to veer off course during her hoop due to the grasshopper, which was disposed of a by a volunteer at the routine's end.

So what would she have done if it was lying in her path.

"You just have to step on it," she admitted.

Who needs Mortein when you've got a national and Commonwealth rhythmic champion!?

Update- Naazmi has rounded out her Delhi 2010 campaign with yet another gold medal (ball) and two silvers (rope, ribbon). Congratulations, Naazmi! Australia is very proud!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Rotterdam 2010: Caption This

Would love to see your funny* captions for this priceless moment from podium training. Thus far, I simply can't go past -

"Peggy, we can't just WALK into Mordor."

* 'Funny' does NOT mean 'inappropriate

Delhi/Rotterdam 2010: Awesome Source

Hulloooo! It's a simply wonderful Wednesday because I'm up to my ears in awesome news!

1. A hearty congratulations to Team Australia who won an historic gold medal last night in the rhythmic teams event. This marked the first time we've scored team gold in rhythmic at a Commonwealth Games, and thus all the gymnastics disciplines in the one Games. Wowzers! Hopefully it's the start of something big.

"We've not ever won any more than bronze in the teams - we've always been pipped by Canada and Malaysia constantly. Now we've finally come up," [coach Danielle] LeRay said. "We have a really consistently strong team now, not just one member being strong like we've had in the past."

Usually when your mobile phone starts beeping uncontrollably when you're a long way from home, you can bet it's bad news.

For Australia's rhythmic gymnastics coach Danielle LeRay and her charges Naazmi Johnston, Janine Murray and Danielle Prince, it wasn't.

It was good news. Very good news...

2. WAG podium training pics from Rotterdam via The Couch Gymnast (click for larger).

You can follow Rotterdam updates (reports and pics) via Gymnastics Australia here.

GA also have some lovely pics (many from Couchy herself) up here as well.

There is a podium training report featuring Australia's subdivision on the official Rotterdam website here.

"Emily Little, Australia’s upcoming star, also trained brilliantly, performing solid, hit routines repeatedly and performing high, clean double-twisting Yurchenkos on vault. Georgia Simpson, an elegant gymnast who possesses a natural gift for dance, soon became the many photographers in the arena’s darling with her exquisite execution. It looked almost as though she had been watching some YouTube videos of Nastia Liukin! She even had the flick of the ponytail and the stare down to a tee!"

GymGirl84, dutifully posting updates at GGMB, provided the following snippets from podium training (unfortunately she didn't ID too any names beside Mitchell so I'm filling in the blanks from what I know of the girls' routines!):

VT: Mitchell, Little each did their Baitova. Two other gymnasts (unnamed) competed a tsuk full and a piked front respectively (my guess is Brennan and Wheeler)

UB: Lauren caught her jaeger a little close, but stuck her double front dismount.
Wheeler shaposhnikova, high tkatchev, double pike dismount
Bonora Comaneci, overshoot, dead hang getting to high bar, fell on her double front
Little jaeger, shoot to low back up to high, toe on full, double layout

BB: Mitchell ff-ff LO; jumps, does not get her double spin in sitting position around; free walkover-split jump-front tuck; switch ringleap; low double pike, second time her turn was all the way around. Still low double pike, but the rest is solid as rock.

Wheeler full turn sitting position; front tuck; ff-back tuck; side somi; full turn not complete; ff-ff layout, seemed to put her foot wrong and did only a layout.

Bonora split-back tuck; free walkover combo to LOSO; nice onodi, side somi; free cartweel; yang bo; full turn; double pike. Later again split, wolf, back tuck; free walkover combo to LOSO; free cartweel; onodi-side somi; switch ring; double pike.

Simpson Nice start at side, split on the beam; full turn leg horizontal; wobble at front tuck; split-wolf; breaks free walkover to LOSO combo; repeats, is good. Split jump-pike back, free cartweel, long pause before dismount: ff-ff double tuck. Knees together, fought for landing but had to take a step.


1. Bonora double tuck; double twist; triple spin; 1,5-full; free walkover; double pike
2. Little? Full in; double tuck; could not follow the rest because of a phonecall
3. Brennan Full in; straight somi to front full; double tuck.
4. Miller Falls out of triple spin; double twist front fall; high stuck double pike; 2,5 twist
5. Mitchell double arabian OOB; piked full in; 2,5 turn in sitting position; double pike.
6. Wheeler double arabian to sit; double tuck; full turn in sitting position; front full, front; split jump; double pike
"7th girl I did not watch, but she performed".

Please please PLEASE don't use these notes as reason to start a "They're too tired for this!/So-and-so was a poor choice!/I bet so-and-so-gets-dropped!/Our results are going to suck monkeys!" muck-fling. Comments are moderated.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Rotterdam 2010: Training

The dust of Delhi has settled and now the Team Aus convoy sets its sights on Rotterdam.*

The Couch Gymnast is on the scene (ain't she always?) and has some cracking photos from WAG training up to view here. Keep your eyes on her blog (as well as this one, aheheheh) for more news and views on Team Georgia Team Australia from the World Championships.

You can also see a couple of training pics at the official Facebook page for the Victorian Women's High Performance Centre and this page here (thanks, MCB!).

Couchy was kind enough to send me the following report and additional pics of Team Australia in training...

I watched the Aussies train today- mostly on bars. They look good.

Larrissa nailed a few sets and did the most beautiful dismount I have seen in a long time!

Georgia Bonora looked good. She seems to be coughing a little, so I hope she is not getting sick.

Wheeler looked pretty good too. Her Tkatchev is pretty hot, as Peggy says. She also looks very clean.

Emily Little seemed to be struggling a little today. She was quite upset when I arrived, so maybe she had hurt herself. She seems qutte tired, as though India took its toll a little, but she is still performing well. Sheer talent will push that little gun through.

Lauren- well apparently she did another corker floor, but I missed it. Her bars is okay, she is working hard on it. She was vaulting well and seems to have energy to spare.

Ashleigh Brennan, the quietest Australian was quietly doing her work cleanly and well.

Georgia Simpson looked simply gorgeous on bars. She swings soooo beautifully!

I will see their other rotations tomorrow at podium training and keep you updated.

Thanks, TCG! You're ace.

Australia's podium training session is/was today, but closed to the public.

GA lists the following schedule for the competition:

Sunday 17 October
2.00am AEDST - Women's qualification

Tuesday 19 October
4.00am AEDST - Men's qualification

Thursday 21 October
1.00pm AEDST - Women's team final

Friday 22 October
1.00pm AEDST - Men's team final

Saturday 23 October
0.00am AEDST - Men's all-around final
3.30am AEDST - Women's all-around final

Saturday 23 October
21.00pm AEDST - Women's apparatus finals (vault, uneven bars) and men's apparatus finals (floor, pommel horse and rings)

Sunday 24 October
21.00pm AEDST - Women's apparatus finals (beam, floor) and men's apparatus finals (vault, parallel bars and horizontal bar)

*for our artistic gymnasts. The rhythmic gymnastics kicks off tonight with team qualification in rope and ball; watch live and in full on Delhi Gold from 7:25pmAEDST tonight!