Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Hello Goodbye

Hi all.

Have yourselves a fantastic end of 2014 and start of 2015. Hope it finds you happy and healthy, wherever you are.

I don't know how much I'll be posting here in the new year, I never can tell each month how much gymnastics news I'll have the resources and patience to sit & write about - it almost seems fitting that in the last week of the year we get a bunch of nuggets featuring the senior WAGs.

But I'll definitely still be firing off regular updates at Twitter, as it's quicker and easier to update. It's a great up-to-the-minute resource for the sport. And I'm definitely not disappearing for good.

Thanks for all the support thus far - 6 whole years whAAAATTTTTT!!??

Be excellent to eachother.


Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Little Miss Media

Dual silver medallist from Glasgow, Mary-Anne Monckton, is featured in two lovely media nuggets of late.

1. Monckton's former Victorian clubmate Ashleigh Brennan is branching out into blogging (wahey!) as part of her journey as a school fitness instructor and physiology Masters student. Her most recent entry features an interview with Mez.

2. She was also interviewed by globe-trotting podcast hosts with the most Gymcastic, talking about her gymnastics career to date and recent injury recovery, including insightful stories from Glasgow and Nanning 2014. Some of them are just so precious!

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Flic Flac Flick

Keep your eyes and ears out on the film festival circuit next year...

Image via Collider.com

"The Bronze", an independent American comedy-drama about gymnastics will screen on the opening day of the 2015 Sundance Film Festival in Utah! Directed by Brian Buckley and with a screenplay co-written by star Melissa Rauch (pictured above), I read that that it also features one of my favourite comedy performers, Saturday Night Live sketchmistress Cecily Strong!

"In 2004, Hope Ann Greggory became an American hero after winning the bronze medal for the women’s gymnastics team. Today, she’s still living in her small hometown, washed-up and embittered. Stuck in the past, Hope must reassess her life when a promising young gymnast threatens her local celebrity status."

Sunday, December 7, 2014


It's 12 Noon on Sunday - tune into day 2 of the Mexico Open at the link below!

Em is in first place after day one's 2 apparatus! :)


Update -

Em looks lovely in Commonwealth green and gold starting on beam.

Unfortunately she came off on her bhs loso series and had a big hop forward on her 2.5 twist dismount but was far less shaky than you'd expect for someone's very first meet back. She had nice form in her leaps and single wolf pirouette but there's definitely room for improvement. Final score was 12.600

Floor - fantastic effort for Emily! Using her 2012 music, Em rocked a tucked tsuk, double back tuck, 1/1 to 2/1 twist and STUCCCCCCCCK double pike for 13.350. She seemed a little tired come the last pass but greater stamina will come in time. This was a stellar effort from her and she should be very proud of her four routines!


Wow wow wow. Ginormous congratulations to Emily who has finished 2nd AA in Mexico with 53.550 overall Ahead of the legendary Oksana Chusovitina!

 Images courtesy Abierto Mexicano Facebook

See video of Emily's vault here, bars here, beam here and floor here.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Vamos Emily!

Best wishes to Emily Little as she returns to international competition for Australia at the 2014 Mexico Open/Abierto Mexicano in the coming days.

 Yes, that's judge and WA gym legend Allana Slater with her!

Participants compete in mixed nation 'pairs', Em has been teamed up with Italy's Paolo Ottavi.

Check the official event Twitter here and Facebook page here, Em features in some photos from the welcome function. Not sure who she's more starstruck about meeting - Oksana Chusovitina or Snoopy!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

They Tried To Make Her Go To Rehab....

For those interested in injury rehabilitation in gymnastics, or just plain keen to get inspired, check out dual Commonwealth Games silver medallist Mary-Anne Monckton's youtube channel.

"Mez" Monckton has been updating weekly video instalments of her progress after surgery on a peroneal tendon (ankle) tear. She's been sporting a big ol' boot but that hasn't kept her away from the sport she loves.

Currently 4 weeks in, Mary-Anne's vlogs show her determined regime in and out of the gym, building up muscle strength and getting back into the swing of things on the trampoline and strap bar. We look forward to seeing this gutsy Victorian senior back on the floor in 2015, fitter than ever!

Follow more of Mary-Anne's updates at Twitter.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Poster Girl

Just announced - Emily Little to compete at the Mexico Open in December!

Details to follow once they are made known. The event website is here and Facebook page here.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Massilia Mixed Bag

While the purple-powered Aussie trio ended up out of the team medals in 10th, the positive news out of Marseille is that Georgia Godwin is through in first place to the Masters Massilia beam final with 14.133! She was also our highest AA finisher in 16th. It seems like not all of the three competed vault or bars or floor as we finished a trailing 10th on each of these, but the girls ranked an impressive 2nd overall on beam (Godwin 1st, Nedov 11th).

The event Facebook page to get scores and photos is here, videos from sessions are going up here and here. Piibunina's account currently has GG's floor and Rianna's floor up and I'm sure more will appear over the next 24 hours.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Two La La!

Gymnastics QLD confirmed today that sunshine staters Rianna Mizzen and Georgia Godwin are Marseille-bound! The pair will take on some of the world's best at Elite Massilia, November 14-16! Godwin is the 2014 National AA champion and Mizzen was a member of the 2013 Australian Youth Olympic Festival team.

Bon chance a deux!


Magnifique! Gymnastics Australia announced this afternoon that a third gymnast has been added to the delegation to France - beam wonder Emma Jane Nedov, fresh from her stellar Worlds debut! Go Em!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Nanning Catchup

For anyone that missed it at the time (and believe me, blink and you would have), an awesome Youtuber has put up Australia's bars rotation from 2014 Worlds prelims, the only ones captured on China TV.

Check out the individual routines here.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Whatever Happened To...

... Waverley's Ulln (Yuleen) Sternberg?

Great news! The steady Ms Sternberg has followed the path of several Aussies and pursued collegiate gymnastics in the USA, recently joining the ranks at University of California for the 2014-2015 season.

Yuleen, who has also trained in Japan, had been spending quite some time in California, balancing schooling with gymnastics training at Head Over Heels Gymnastics. Her bars skills and vault confidence flourished at the centre, and she put herself up for recruiting. She will now proudly join the ranks of the 'Cal' Bears as an all-arounder, and says head coach Justin Howell:

"On the uneven bars, Yuleen has an amazing variety of skills from us to choose from and we’re really looking forward to being able to make some unique skill choices. She also has a very elegant line... Yuleen also brings experience with international competition, so she knows what it’s like to compete and focus on difficulty level and execution. It will really help her bring a polished look to her collegiate performances."

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

You've Got Mail

Right on, Nick from Malvern East!

"The training and effort that goes into these performances puts other sports to shame...When will our media support sports besides the mainstream ones?"

You tell 'em!

Oh, and marketing team that thought up the "nude bodypainted models" at the Women In Sport Awards? - You got your gymnastics mixed up and your integrity completely inside out. Big fail.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

2014 Worlds: Women's Floor Final

Poised and precise in purple, Waverley Gymnastics' own Larrissa Miller showed she belonged in the world's top ranks with a 6th place finish in the floor final today. Showing no sign of bother from the team final slip-up,  Larrissa stood up every tumble and emphasised her elegant lines for a final impressive score of 14.233. Onya Riss!

Revisit the routine here.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

2014 Worlds: AA Final Wrap-Up

Last night had everything from a parade of pink to a bee in the bouquet!

Georgia Rose Brown was elegant as always in the "lucky" purple prelims leo, but our only look at her in the livestream was on floor, a routine that seemed a little watered down (front lay full in place of the double arabian pass) but the closing double tuck was great. A world away from the freakishly unsinkable Americans, sure, but mentally tough enough to tackle four exhausting pieces with all her teammates in the stands, Georgia finished 21st overall.

Her scores are here, the best coming on vault.

I've been holding out the vain hope someone gets withdrawn and we'll see Larrissa today in the uneven bars final, but now that comp is about to kick off for the day it's looking highly unlikely.

Tune in tomorrow (Sunday) from 4:00pm AEDST for Larrissa Miller in the women's floor final. And who knows, maybe we'll have a miracle and Emma Nedov budges into beam final too!

Friday, October 10, 2014

2014 Worlds: WAG AA Final

One girl, 5 feet 8 inches of balletic ballistics - tonight, Victorian's own Georgia Rose Brown will take on 23 of the world's best in the women's all-around final!

Follow along once again with Allana Slater live on Twitter or Facebook, and tune in for the livestream at 10:00pm AEDST. The start list is here, "Rosie" will kick off on floor.

Olivia and Larrissa have sent her some good luck wishes and will be joining Lauren Mitchell and Emma Nedov in the stands to cheer her on, while team and Victorian clubmate Maryanne Monckton teasted that Georgia will not be in a brand new leo design but one that to her is "lucky". CommGames team teal? Prelims purple? Time will tell!


Thursday, October 9, 2014

2014 Worlds: WAG Team Final Wrap-Up

Eight is great but seven is simply heaven!

Photos by AFP

Australia's women bettered their prelims performance and finished 7th in the team final last night, counting one major fall across their competition, a slip in an otherwise glamorous performance from Larrissa Miller on floor. She's bound for redemption in the final this weekend.

Said routine, the only one of Australia's to be broadcast on the live online stream last night, can be seen at 00:35:00 here. I am very frustrated they showed Georgia saluting for beam then cut away.

Scores were brilliant on beam and booming on bars, talk about hitting when it counts in 6-3-3!

Liv says thumbs up!

The team are to be commended, and the only way from here is up and up some more. Monckton tweeted after the competition that she plans to have her Yurchenko double next year, and Vivian is no doubt to get her Schludern signature skill down pat.

See the full results here, AFP press photos here and while we wait for what are bound to be stunning finals shots of the team, you can view Nadia Boyce's arrestingly beautiful pictures from prelims here. Please do not use without her express permission.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

2014 Worlds: WAG Team Final

Australia's super sixpack pulled off the almost unthinkable on Monday night and has qualified to tonight's team final in 8th place.

A confident opening beam rotation to open (newbies Nedov and Muneanu holding their own admirably) and a world-class bars rotation to finish (love a good stuck dismount, two of them in a row is even better!) saw Australia edge its way in behind an uncharacteristically shaky Romania. One online observer commented, "Australia are treating this prelims like it's team finals!" and that attitude certainly paid off.

Unfortunately the FIG didn't seem to film any of their routines, however NNTV did show all the team's bars routines as they happened.

So. To tonight!

The official start list is here and live results page is here. Australia will start on floor, rotating alongside Romania. Coverage will start from 10:00pm AEDST.

FIG will be livestreaming on Youtube here, and I've no doubt USA Gymnastics will do the same here. NNTV may show it in full here. (If you're seeking something to unlock access, look up "HideMyIP", Hola Unblocker, Tunnelbear or Proxmate.)

Gymnastics Australia have superstar Allana Slater providing live commentary on their Facebook.

And of course, for up-to-the-minute coverage of skills and spills there are the usual twittery tweeters at International Gymnast, The All Around and FIG.


Monday, October 6, 2014

2014: WAG Qualifying (contin.)

The hour draws ever near!

Feast your eyes on some of the quick hit links below from 9:00pm AEDST to follow the Aussie girls in action in preliminary finals. (Unfortunately the subdivision will not be livestreamed, by USAG at least.)

Gymnastics Australia has confirmed that the lineup will not include Lauren Mitchell and the start list (page 41) reflects as such. Our all-arounders will be Vivian, Brown and Munteanu.

Best wishes to all the girls. They don't have an easy task but we know they will do their very best!

(UPDATE - An NNTV (TV China) link is here, they keep crossing to the arena so we *might* see Australia on it?)



During warmup, IG updated this:

"Lauren Mitchell was scheduled to compete here and even did podium training, but after that she injured her ankle on the landing of a 2-1/2 twist to punch front. It's a soft tissue injury, but there is just not enough time for it to heal well enough for her to compete. We all look forward to see her in Glasgow next year!!!"

Sunday, October 5, 2014

2014 Worlds: WAG Qualifying

Nadia Boyce has done yet another stellar photo album of the Aussies, this time in podium training. Olivia also tweeted this morning a picture of yet another Aussie training leo - black and pink with 'spider web' pattern on the shoulders, they've nicknamed it Spider Pig!

In less frivolous news, as of 11:00 this morning it was made known by two unofficial (i.e. media not related to or endorsed by FIG or the official event website) tweets that Lauren Mitchell rolled both ankles in training and is out of the meet tomorrow night. I will await an official statement from GA and/or tomorrow's start lists before being certain she is out of the lineup, and if that turns out to be the case this is very sad news for the team and we wish Lauren all the best for a speedy recovery.

UPDATE 3:30PM - Gymnastics Australia released a statement confirming that Lauren suffered an ankle sprain and that it is "unlikely" she will compete these Worlds, the remaining lineup being Mary Anne, Georgia Rose, Larrissa, Emma, Olivia and Kiara. However, we have up until one hour before the competition to lock this lineup in. 

Saturday, October 4, 2014

2014 Worlds: MAG Qualifying


Australia's campaign in Nanning officially kicks off this morning, as our male gymnasts take to the floor for qualifying. From all reports they're extremely excited to finally get out there.

They will appear in subdivision 6 at 11am Australian Eastern time, starting on parallel bars.

Start lists are here

Due to an injury sustained in training, Australia announced yesterday that Sean O'Hara will be the team reserve. Wishing Sean a speedy recovery and that he can make the most of the atmosphere at the event while on the sidelines. Every team needs a cheerleader!

Follow the competition live today and in ensuing days at the following sources -

FIG Youtube - should be livestreaming all competition sessions
USAG Youtube - (USA's prelims session and TF/AA/EF finals only) will require an IP blocker such as Hola! for Chrome/Firefox, Proxmate for Firefox for you to view the channel
Piibunina's Youtube for training and miscellaneous videos inside the arena
If a CCTV (Chinese TV) or other livestream crops up I will update!

International Gymnast start list and results page

FIG Twitter (official hashtag is #FIGWorlds2014ART)
International Gymnast Twitter
Aussie Gym Boys Twitter 
Sean O'Hara Twitter - (will be livetweeting the boys in quals today)
Gymnastics Australia Twitter and Facebook

The Couch Gymnast - exclusive photos and reports

For anyone wondering a little more about how the girls went in podium... photographer Nadia B has teased that Lauren vaulted her Yurchenko full and Kiara has a new double front on floor! In other upgrade news, according to FIG both Olivia and Lauren have submitted new elements!


After their subdivision, Australia finished in 14th place (324.917) after a bumpy six events, with standout Tsukahara the highest AA finisher in 18th. Qualifying competition is still underway so their definite qualification through to next year's Worlds remains tentative. It was certainly not their very best outing but it had its commendable moments. Nerves and niggles can get the worst of anyone.

Flash quotes from after the competition were made available from the event website, here are Trenton, Chris and Michael.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

2014 Worlds: Training


Excitement! Anxiety! Leo envy!

Check out Nadia Boyce's photo gallery of Aussie WAGs in the training hall (please do not use any photos without permission).

I am currently trying to follow the girls as they go about podium training but I've been advised several media representatives are over at a welcome/orientation session hence no livetweets from International Gymnast Magazine as in previous sessions. However, Gymnastics Coaching did make mention of their first rotation, I am hoping they have more to say as the night goes on.

I will update this post when videos etc become available.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

2014 Worlds: LEO ALERT!

The powers that be have unveiled one of the Aussie leotards for Worlds, a gorgeous green and gold one not dissimilar to their Commonwealth Games team outfit.

The Nanning event website spoke with team manager Liz Chetkovich after team training here.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

2014 Worlds: Nanning Beginning

Our male and female artistic gymnasts have hit Nanning and commenced training sessions (on podium for men today, stretching and training gym for the women).

I'm a little concerned to read more than one gymnast, from Oz and other delegations, complaining that the mats are very hard and difficult to get used to. Hope it settles in time! Thanks to Olivia's Insagram we got to see that our girls rocked black and fluro green training leos today, not unlike team gold favourites Team USA! Guess that's one way to let the world know you're spoiling for a battle...

It's unclear yet whether it will be China-specific coverage or not, but several training videos are starting to go up here. And the glorious Grace Chiu has photographs going up here.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Fine China

Best wishes to our men's and women's teams in their final preparations for China.

Australia's WAGs have had some extra time in training camp at home and depart this evening, while the men have already jetted over and been adapting to all the local excitement alongside the likes of friendly foes Canada.

All the action from Guanxi Gymnasium starts Sept 30 with the men's podium training. Nanning is two hours behind Australian Eastern Time.

The schedule for Australia's competitors (local time) is as follows:

Saturday Oct 4: MAG Qualifying, AUS is in subdivision 6 at 9:00am
Monday Oct 6: WAG Qualifying, AUS is in subdivision 11 at 6:00pm

Tuesday Oct 7: MAG Team Final (7:00pm)
Wednesday Oct 8: WAG Team Final (7:00pm)
Thursday Oct 9: Men's All Around Final (7:00pm)
Friday Oct 10: Women's All Around Final (7:00pm)
Saturday Oct 11: Apparatus Finals Day 1 (1:00pm)
Sunday Oct 12: Apparatus Finals Day 2 (1:00pm)

The All Around blog did a nice preview write-up, including recent scores to give a picture of the power players, here.

I will update as I get more information about available livestreams (I believe USA Gymnastics are streaming their delegation's sessions, however you'll need to look into IP hiders or unblockers to access the coverage).

Friday, September 19, 2014


Thanks to everyone's favourite ginger ninja being given the all-clear to publish this piratical pic, our team to Nanning must very clearly be...

Georgia Rose Brown\
Larrissa Miller
Lauren Mitchell
Maryanne Monckton
Kiara Munteanu
Emma Jane Nedov
Olivia Vivian

Non-travelling reserve: Emily Little

Read Gymnastics Australia's official announcement here.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

2014 Worlds: WAG Team Trial 2

Tomorrow (Friday) afternoon, eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeep!

Best of luck to the gang.

We heart you!

Monday, September 15, 2014

2014 Worlds: MAG Team

Michael Mercieca
Sean O’Hara
Chris Remkes
Naoya Tsukahara
Luke Wadsworth
Trenten Wan
Luke Wiwatowski


Mitchell Jones, Kent Pieterse, Max Woloszyn

Congrats to the chaps!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Nearly Nanning

It is edging ever closer to the hour we know our men and women bound for China.

Nominative teams* have been announced today, while on Wednesday the news out of team WAG was an update of their injury petition list for team trial #2 to: Godwin, Brown, Miller and Mitchell.

* Not official, not confirmed. Can be changed up to 24 hours before competition begins.

The men's team is looking to be announced Monday (15th) after their trial this weekend. It's great to see some of the guys who had to step down before Glasgow battle for a place once more!

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

A Little Excitement

Yes, it's that time again!

Our artistic gymnasts are back in camp, this time looking towards Nanning, China (not to be confused with Nanjing, where the Youth Olympics have just merrily wrapped up!) and the 2014 World Championships.

While we await official reports and announcements after Friday's second team trial*, we can confirm today that 2012 Olympian Emily Little has returned to the sport to trial. Says fellow camper Olivia Vivian on twitter today, "She's baaaaaack! [And] Looking great, too!"


Before people get toooooo crazy speculating why certain seniors aren't in this photo Olivia posted today, please do remember there's still a second day to go.

* Correction: This was trial #1. A second trial to determine the team is to be held in the next ten days.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Feat of Clay / That's Watts Up

Two commendable results out of the Youth Olympics in China this week.

Flippin', flyin' West Australian Abbie Watts qualified, and then finished, 6th overall in the women's individual trampoline event with stiff competition from China and Russia. You can see a brief profile of Abbie from before her departure for the meet here on Perth's Today Show.

Pacific Rim vault gold medallist Clay Stephens (who I learned is cheekily nicknamed "Nemo" by teammates due to the fact he only has one pectoral muscle!) fell short of qualifying for the men's all-around final by one place, but is confidently through to the vault final on Sunday. Clay popped by the Nanjing athlete's village video booth here. Best of luck to Clay.

Taking to the floor soon will be our rhythmic gymnasics representative, Tara Wilkie!

Saturday, August 2, 2014

After The Dust Has Settled...

"I say after every major comp I'll reassess and see where I am and probably during this competition I reassessed and I was like 'I'm not done yet, I want to go to worlds." -- Lauren Mitchell

"Let England have a turn. We'll get back. Next year in 2015 and 2016 we have a couple of little hot shots that are turning 16, because they have to be 16 before they can compete at this level. So we've got some 14 and 15-year-olds back at home that will be 'our Claudia' next year." - Peggy Liddick

From here.








YAY MEZ!!!!!!!!

Friday, August 1, 2014







Glasgow 2014: Apparatus Finals Day 1



Australia can celebrate its first individual gymnastics medal in Glasgow with a Larrissa Miller thriller, nailing one of her best ever uneven bars performances.

Up against fancied Englanders Ruby "WAIT WHAT THAT RIGHT THERE WAS SO AWESOME SHOW THAT AGAIN" Harrold and Rebecca "Made of grit, guts, elbow grease and sparkly eyeshadow" Downie, Larrissa held her nerve through her signature release combination and picture-perfect stalders. The icing on the cake was a stuck full-out dismount that the crowd roared for. It was an agonising .1 off of first place, that went to a gracious Downie. But as with Vivian's fifth place the night before, from Miller's joyous and humbled reaction it was definitely as good as gold. Fittingly, she was seen off the podium to the strains of Oz rockers AC/DC.

 If you get the chance I urge you to go back and watch the slow-motion replay of her dismount. The leg form and foot form is absolutely textbook. She could school other gymnasts with it. As one tweeter noted, standing for photographs next to the Brits, Larrissa had her feet in a perfectly dainty fourth position!

Alongside Larrissa in the purple all-around leotard was Georgia Rose Brown, possibly still catching her breath from putting up a neat performance in the vault final for 7th place. Georgia was introduced with an "Aussie Aussie Aussie!" from the crowd started by the cheery arena announcer and it seemed to be just the thing to spur her on. She, too, showed lovely form throughout (it is always a relief when she gets the geinger around) and a very satisfying stuck double tuck dismount but it was not quite enough to reach the medal podium. 5th in such a tough field is a great effort.

Larrissa and Georgia will now get to rest and cheer on Lauren Mitchell and Maryanne Monckton in the beam final, and Lauren solo in the floor final, both bound to be exciting contests. With medals from World Cups and World Championships between them, not to mention each being senior national title holder at least once, beam prowess holds the twosome in great stead.

I'm cheering them on with the hashtag #LozMezerables (until I think of a better one of course).

Australia's other finallist last night, Naoya Tsukahara, also came close to a medal in the rings final. His outstanding form on the apparatus put him in 4th place, which he can hopefully better in tonight's parallel bars and high bar finals (does he ever get tired!?), the latter of which will be an absolute stormer for the crowd as gymnastics for Glasgow 2014 comes to a close. He will share each of his finals appearances with Luke Wadsworth and Sean O'Hara.

The finals will take place at approximately 10:50pm AEST, aired live on Glasgow6 on TenPlay. Also watch out for Kent Pieterse, who will kick off Australia's campaign on vault!

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Glasgow 2014: MAG/WAG All-Around

What an emotional gauntlet being a fan of this sport can be!

Last night Australia threw everything it could in the men's and women's disciplines, with Naoya Tsukahara and Olivia Vivian each making our best finishes in 5th.

Naoya had nerves of steel throughout,  even equalling Max Whitlock's score on rings, but fell victim to pommel as so many do and didn't have the difficulty on floor (but certainly had the execution) to contend with any of the fancied Brits. He was greatly encouraged by his teammates along the way, who also had the happy conclusion of ranking within the top 12 - Luke Wadsworth in 9th, Sean O'Hara in 11th.

Naoya will compete in tonight's first apparatus finals day on rings and Kent Pieterse will appear in the vault final -- watch live on the TenPlay website or OneHD if they deign to show it from 11:30pm AEST.

Have to say I love this little shout-out from Kent, especially the main photo!

If you do one thing these Commonwealth Games, go back on TenPlay and watch Olivia Vivian's all-around competition. What she pulled off last night was nothing short of phenomenal.

After not competing in a major event for Australia in 6 years, after not competing all-around on the world stage for even longer, after a broken back, after a fractured hand, after a devastating loss to her family, after having a less than ideal second day of the teams event, after all of that... she hit every single skill to her feet and finished inside the top 8. Her beam was remarkable considering the disasterous round she had the day before, her flip mount and y-scale earning audience applause. And through it all she never lost her smile. Resplendent in the purple leotard (congrats voters!) while Georgia Rose sported the pink, Olivia patiently waited for each gymnast in her rotation to finish their routine and speak with their coach, then immediately offered a high-five or a hug. I wanted to cheer but desperately didn't want to wake my housemate!

 In a touching moment after beam, she flashed her wrist strappings to the camera that had [what looked very much like] "RIP Dad" scrawled on in marker. "That was for you, Dad!" she said down the barrel with a big smile. And wouldn't he have been half proud of what had come before it. I am devastated my feed dropped out mere moments before her vault. What a joy and relief it must have been for her to get through four intense rotations, and I only wish it gone as well for her in the team final. The result mattered, but at the same time it mattered the least. This 90 minutes of performance was the embodiment of Olivia: stylish, daring, enthusiastic. She became an internet sensation before she'd even mounted the podium for the last rotation and I hope it serves her well in her ambitions to be an ambassador for gymnastics. It's true she will never be a balletic Hollie, an explosive Trudy or a stoic Slater. But if there's one thing that defines this girl it is guts.

It is then with a heavier heart that I review Georgia-Rose Brown's performance. It was definitely not her best outing and I sincerely hope that if it was down to nerves or a niggling injury she can get the assistance and self-belief she needs as soon as possible. She cuts a striking figure (even in pink!) and the Khorkina comparisons continued unabated throughout the competition, especially after a tidy bars and neat Yurchenko full. Unfortunately the eye-catching illusion turn on beam saw her come undone once again, and she worryingly substituted her arabian on floor for a front layout full twist before going out of bounds on her double tuck. She finished an unlucky 13th. As I always say - onwards and upwards from here. The future is still very bright for her.

Tonight, the hopefully unsinkable GR Brown will take to vault and bars, while her compatriot Larrissa Miller will also contend bars against six fierce Commonwealth rivals. I believe it will be approximately 2:45am AEST. Happy to be corrected on this.

There's still a chance, Aussies. Give 'em hell!

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Glasgow 2014: MAG/WAG Team Final

There might not be an 'i' in team but there sure is an "och aye"!

Australia's women go into the beam and floor component tonight ranked 2nd behind England, AEST approx 2:45am. Last night was absolutely electric with 8 hit routines from 8, and you can re-watch the stream at http://tenplay.com.au > Catchup > Gymnastics > Artistic > Part 2. Looooove those new leos, you can't beat the green and gold.

The Aussie men kick off their day 2 on high bar RIGHT NOW!


In every raincloud there's a silver... medal.

Australia's women chased but couldn't catch the imperial English.

Some lowlights (two beam falls from Vivian she took with good grace; an uncharacteristically haywire floor from Miller) swerved into highlights (Mitchell stamping her beam and floor finals berths with barnstorming routines on both; Monckton shakily but happily slotting herself into the former as well), dipped back down again (gorgeous Georgia buckled multiple times) and on and on it went agonisingly, until the final results flashed up and Australia conceded its long-held title. Peggy and the girls gave their thoughts here.

On the men's side, a better round of competition brought happier news - while they finished a commendable 4th, all-around final placings were cemented for O'Hara, Tsukahara and Pieterse. They will take to the floor (and pommel!) at 10:00pm AEST tonight. Short of stature but angelic of complexion, newbie Jack Rickards won himself some female fans last night, if social media is anything to go by!

In the women's all-around, Georgia Rose-Brown and Olivia Vivian get another medal shot, with Georgia starting her campaign on vault in subdivision 1, Olivia on bars in subdivision 2. This will be taking place around 3:30am AEST. And you can vote on Liv's leotard for the competition!

MAG AA Start List 
WAG AA Start List Sub 1
WAG AA Start List Sub 2

For apparatus finals we have
*Kent P on vault, Naoya on rings/pbars/high bar, Luke W on p-bars also and Sean on high bar.
* Georgia-Rose on vault, Larrissa and Georgia-Rose on bars, Lauren and Maryanne on beam and Lauren on floor.

A reminder you can catch all the gymnastics as it streamed live on TenPlay's Catchup page.

"We’re just going to get better and better from here. We came in ranked third so we were expected to get the bronze.“And we won the silver and I’m thrilled with that." -- Peggy Liddick

One team, one dream!

Monday, July 28, 2014

Glasgow 2014: Gie It Laldy!

It's such a nifty phrase!

Huuuuuuuuuuuuuuge bouquets of luck to our men's and women's artistic teams who take to the floor in qualifying at stupid o'clock Australian time tonight in Glasgow. Subdivision 1 kicks off at 10:30pm AEST. And keep your eyes out for ex-Victorian elite Stella Savvidou who will be flying the flag for Cyprus!

The qualification doubles as the team final, and will be split over today and tomorrow. I am told gymnastics will be on the Glasgow3 channel.

Podium training image via Gymnastics Australia on Facebook

MAG - Subdivision 2, Australia starts on rings
WAG - Subdivision 8, Australia starts on bars (approx 5:15am AEST)

Glasgow 2014: Rhythmic Finals

The best thing about not being number 1 is that the only way is up.

Jaelle Cohen and Danni Prince were not able to replicate Australia's stellar Delhi finish in the all-around, walking away from Glasgow with 14th and 9th respectively and no apparatus final berths. But top 15 in the Commonwwealth is certainly nothing to sniff at, of course! Wishing them and Amy Quinn (who thanked all her supporters today on Instagram) the best as they keep working towards Rio.

It was so wonderful seeing the messages of support, and even foreign fans giving their routines some love, on social media.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Glasgow 2014: Rhythmic Teams

Despite some absolutely beautiful routines and determination to see each one through to the very last beat, Australia's statuesque rhythmic gymnastics trio were not able to defend the Commonwealth title from 2010.

Dani, Amy and Jaelle finished a commendable fifth overall with 126.725, some minor errors seeing them slip behind longtime rivals Canada, history-makers Wales, Malaysia and England.

I was not able to catch all of the broadcast last night or this morning, but enjoyed what I saw of Danielle's stunning ball and ribbon routines in full. What a stunner.

The results can be viewed here (it even lists their music!), click on team or competitor names for further information. You can also relive a few routines from the arena thanks to coach Danielle LeRay!

The great news is we get to see Jaelle and Dani take to the floor again in the individual all-around final which should get underway on OneHD/TenPlay Glasgow 2 very, very shortly!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Glasgow 2014: Let The Games Begin!

I don't know about you guys, but I am as jumpy as a wee terrier to see these games get underway after such a fun opening ceremony!

Tonight we get our first look at Australia's gymnastics campaign, with Dani Prince, Jaelle Cohen and Amy Quinn strutting their stuff in the rhythmic team event (that doubles as apparatus finals qualification).

You can watch live on One (or Channel 10 if Masterchef doesn't run hours overtime!), or on a device using TenPlay from 9pm AEST.


Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Commonwealth Comin' Atcha

Best wishes to our defending Commonwealth champion women's artistic gymnastics team who are on their way to bonnie Glasgae!

To sport these training leos!

To hang out in these groovy rooms!

And duke it out with some of the world's best in THIS VENUE!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Viva Glas Vegas!

Faster than a haggis hitting the hotplate, the 2014 Commonwealth Games are almost upon us, and Australia's artistic and rhythmic gymnasts are right in the thick of it.

In the last 24 hours, Australia's female team spoke with the media in Canberra, while the men did their hard yards over in London, both delegations - looking to defend their first place finishes from Delhi - excited and determined.

We have also had two birthdays during the training period: Olivia and Larrissa, congrats ladies!

Below are some details of the competition schedule as well as news features on our competitors which are bound to keep rolling in as the event draws closer.


Women's artistic team
Men's artistic team (amended from announcement at nationals)
Rhythmic team

Daily schedule from the BBC
Schedule in AEST from Gymnastics Australia whose hashtag is #UnlochGym

For some reason they have split the qualifiers over two days of disciplines (a la apparatus finals in a standard competition). Do you like insomnia? I know I do!

Media appearances as of July 16:
* Olivia on Today Tonight WA and the Gymcastic Podcast
* Olivia for PerthNow
* Olivia/Lauren for Fairfax Media (includes photo gallery of team)
* Lauren for Sydney Morning Herald
* Lauren Mitchell for Women's Health - "behind the scenes" at Motivation photoshoot
* Larrissa Miller for International Gymnast
* Greg Corsiglia and men's team
* Jayden Bull for International Gymnast
* Jaelle Cohen for The Today Show (begin awkward turtles............ now.)

Social Media - Official, and current/former Commonwealth gymnasts:
* Gymnastics Australia
* Glasgow 2014
* Maryanne Monckton
* Olivia Vivian
* Larrissa Miller
* Allana Slater
* Luke Wiwatowski


Friday, May 23, 2014

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

National Treasure

You guys. YOU. GUYS.

National Champs kicks off this week! Aw mah gaw!

This morning I boarded an earlier train than usual in town and I am extremely glad for it. Who should be smiling up at me from inside an abandoned Herald Sun but the lovely ladies of Victoria!

Not to be outdone, past champions Lauren Mitchell and Olivia Vivian recently made the back page in WA and recorded a segment alongside Jayden Bull on Studio10 to promote the event.

Women's national coach Peggy Liddick, pictured below with Queensland hopefuls at this morning's training session, spoke to International Gymnast recently, discussing the crop of new seniors vying for Commonwealth Games and World Championship team selection during this week's rounds of competition.

Image credit: QWHPC

Yours truly will be attending the two sessions of Senior and Junior artistic apparatus finals, camera in hand to capture the action. I promise not to neglect the MAGs so much this year! So quick hits and score updates will pretty much be only during rotation changes and wait periods. I figure you guys would rather see than read anyway!

GA have announced that blue-ribbon sessions on Friday, Saturday and Sunday will be livestreamed at gymnastics.org.au, and a highlights package aired on digital station One in July. The livestreaming in particular will be a great opportunity for our international friends to tune in to Australia's progress so spread the word!

Monday, April 21, 2014

You Only Liv Twice

There are athletes and there are fighters.

 A ginormous congratulations to Olivia Vivian, who has become the second Australian gymnast this year to score a maiden World Cup medal overseas.

Liv overcame a hand injury sustained during her guest performance at the recent Victorian state championships to snaffle a medal on uneven bars. I can't seem to find results or reports anywhere but her instagram update breaking the news makes it look like 3rd (bronze)? Either way, a podium finish is a tremendous effort from the girl who never gives up.

Read her thoughts on the ups and downs of the event here.

John Orozco enjoys a Tango Del Livvy!
(photo courtesy of Olivia herself)

Update Monday evening: We have results!

Vivian 3rd on bars, Mitchell 4th and Vivian 5th on floor.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Pacific Rim (minus robots and seamonsters)

At last, at last, another Pacific Rim Championships is upon us!

Australia's gymnasts have arrived in Richmond and been training strongly. You can see some videos of the women's artistic team courtesy of Gymnastike if you click through from here. I'm thrilled to see Kiara Munteanu stand up her barani on beam, and just plain delighted by the prima ballerinitude that is Yasmin Collier.

There's also a video of what I'm fairly certain is Luke Wiwatowski training floor here and high bar here. I think it's the haircut that's throwing me!

The event will be livestreamed here. Richmond is 17 hours behind Melbourne time (7pm Wednesday here = 2am Wednesday there)

Happy early easter! From Mischa Barabach and a random rabbit.

Update Sunday: 

When all is said and done, we've had a lot of fun.

Australia didn't walk away from Richmond with the swag of medals it hoped for, but there was certainly an impressive effort put out on the floor.

An absolutely huge "Onya!" has to go to our gold medallists:

 - Clay Stephens, junior men's vault
- Abbie Watts and Jayden Cooney (yes, sister of Ashley!), junior women's synchro trampoline

As well as our minor, but by no means insignificant, medallists:

- Georgia Rose-Brown, senior women's uneven bars (bronze)
- Men's trampoline team (bronze)
- Hugh McConnell and Dominic Clarke, junior men's synchro trampoline (silver)
-  Dominic Clarke, junior men's individual trampoline (bronze)

Unfortunately Australia came up empty-handed in rhythmic gymnastics, but commentators had very encouraging and admiring words for our ladies in their coverage. I am currently listening back to them gushing over the start of Danni Prince's ribbon routine!

Gymnastike caught up with Georgia Rose Brown, Kiara Munteanu and Peggy Liddick after the women's team/AA round of competition. Smiles all round!

A brief post-meet interview with golden boy Clay can be seen here.

I'll update other media as it comes to hand.

A reminder that footage from the meet's livestream can be viewed here.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

No But Seriously







and take a breath....

Sunday, March 30, 2014

There's Something About Mary-Anne

Sometimes big surprises come in little packages.

While Lauren Mitchell gave Australia it's second 4th placing of the Doha Challenger World Cup (nothing to sniff at of course, it's a pretty A+ new floor routine!), it was dark horse senior Mary-Anne Monckton who hung on for our only medal of the competition, and her first at a World Cup. PB's don't come much better than an international silver medal.

With a 14.700, Mez placed second to Larisa Iordache, and as you can see in the video above gave a performance more than worthy of being alongside the popular Romanian. We hope to see her give this kind of performance at the state and national championships, as the road to Rio swings by Glasgow for the Commonwealth Games.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Doha Double Acts

Victorian Women's High Performance Centre revealed today that the fourth senior joining Lauren Mitchell, Olivia Vivian and Mary-Anne Monckton in Doha is..... ALEX EADE!

Alex and Mary-Anne have arrived safely and look psyched for the competition!

Update Friday:

You win some, you lose some. After putting in a great effort to qualify second, Olivia managed 4th in the uneven bars final after taking an extra swing and losing form. In true Liv style, she has remained upbeat and philosophical about her finish. Heck, she danced on the sidelines before her score even flashed up! Victoria's Alex Eade unfortunately finished well out of contention on floor but will surely only get better from here.

Lauren and Mary-Anne will compete their finals overnight, floor and beam respectively, here's hoping they can replicate or better their top-4 rankings from qualifying.

You can read Olivia's "Doha Diaries" here and here.

Apparently the competition is being livestreamed via dohagym.com

Saturday, March 22, 2014


.... Will be happening right here, so watch that countdown clock!

While this Twitter is updating scores -- if you're reading this at 9pm Saturday they're doing it RIGHT NOW! GO GO GO GO GO GO!

Update 12:40am: Unfortunately I won't be staying up to watch the senior competition.

I can tell you, however that Australia's juniors had a mixed bag of a day, finishing in 5th place as a team. Results courtesy of the Italian Gymnastics Federation can be found here.

Update Sunday: Good morning!

Rewatch the coverage from the senior team and AA event here.

The introduction of the gymnasts is particularly interesting. Instead of marching in behind flags on poles, the athletes walk out behind flagbearers carrying their flag aloft as though it were a military ceremony. Then, an excerpt of each country's national anthem is played before they are sent off to start rotations.

The senior team finished in 4th. Australia's highest AA finisher was Kiara Munteanu in 9th. I have had a quick skip through the footage, I landed on more Aussies in the second half of it then the first so I'll go back and watch in full later today. Kiara stood up her double arabian like an absolute pro (but the same unfortunately can't be said for the punch tuck half on beam, eeeeesh) and Alex Eade has a fun new floor!

A Couch Gymnast wrap up is here. Full results can be seen here.

Update 9:45pm Sunday - apparatus finals happening right now, right here!

You Aint Seen The Last Of Lauren

International Gymnast have just posted a catch-up with Lauren Mitchell who confirms her participation in, and expectations for, next week's Doha World Cup.

 "At this point in time I have put different skills in my routines to fit into the new Code of Points, which I haven't yet competed with," Mitchell said. "In terms of peaking, I'm not planning to peak at this competition as I still have to compete later on in the year, that I want to be fit and healthy for."

And if you see my Jesolo post below, you will find a link to a brand new video of Lauren's coach Martine George advising that Loz's control tests, being filmed and sent to her from back home, are "looking good".

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Livin' La Vita Bella

Best wishes to the Aussie delegation bound for next weekend's City of Jesolo Trophy competition.

VWHPC has posted this photo with a shout-out to the Victorian athletes (including an addition to the lineup, or possibly a travelling reserve, in the form of Alex Eade).

As two Waverley gymnasts embark on their first international outing, the club farewelled one of its superstars. In this brief video, John and Shao-Yi and a gym full of admiring youngsters say some kind words and watch on as Georgia Bonora performs an uneven bars skill for the very last time.

Best wishes to all as they head off on new adventures...


Like Waverley Gymnastics on Facebook to see some photos of the team out and about in Italy. They look darn good in a gondola!

The Italian Gymnastics Federation will reportedly livestream the competition at their Youtube channel right here.

Friday - Aussie coach Martine George took some time out to speak with Gymnastike about Australia's journey to Jesolo after disappointment in London, including upgrades and seniors to watch out for.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Pacific Terrific

Australia has named its full delegation to the 2014 Pacific Rim Championships, this time to be held in Canada.

See the lineups for artistic, rhythmic and trampoline here.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Yes, that is Australian upstart and Nadia Comaneci International all-around champion Georgia Godwin gracing the cover of the latest IG magazine, right next to Olympic superstar Epke Zonderland!

Wonder if this is a sign of more good things to come!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

I'll Be Senior

Stanford Athletics have provided this really lovely video reflection on the careers of outgoing seniors Amanda Spinner and Shona Morgan. *sniff* Is it a little dusty in here or...?

"Shona is calm, cool, quirky and comedic. She leads us off on three events, and sets the tone with her aggressive and artistic work..."

Sunday, February 23, 2014


Wow, how not having a laptop charger messes with your reporting abilities! Sorry folks!

Great news out of the US is that Aussie gymnasts have really flourished after a bumpy start to their campaign.

At the Buckeye Classic shortly after WOGA, The Couch Gymnast reports from results available thus far that Emma Nedov finished a fantastic third on beam, and fourth on bars. Not sure of Jazminne's performance, though I myself had a bit of a baffling time trying to find results sheets from whatever the heck session our girls were in anyway.

(Update: results sheet here!)

And in breaking news from International Gymnast's live coverage out of Oklahoma moments ago, Queensland's Georgia Godwin has won the senior all-around at the Nadia Comaneci international!

A full report will follow in a few hours, including score breakdown. In the meantime, check out this preview featuring some encouraging words from Allana Slater, and have a scroll to view their quick hits. They had some lovely things to say about our delegation, not least of all the eventual AA champion!

Team results were Australia 1, WOGA 2, Romania 3!

Some scores are going up here, but like the Buckeye site initially... a head-scratcher to decipher elite international sessions!

VIDEOS: Courtesy of the Queensland HPC at Facebook, here are our AA winner's bars and beam! And thanks to DoubleFront, here's her floor! And... err... for some reason thanks to IG here she is reassuring Peggy Liddick that she did her job?

Other videos from the event are available if you click through to DF's account. At the moment the only Aussie footage besides Godwin available is Georgia Rose Brown's vault, though more videos will go up in the coming days.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Going WOGAbout

Follow the Aussies taking part in the 2014 WOGA Classic this weekend *LIVE* thanks to Gymnastike!

(If you can't access livestreaming, they'll be doing coverage via social media as well)

A fan on the scene says Em and Jaz were looking good in training! A variety of podium training videos from the stands are going up here. A great hi-res video from Gymnastike on podium training is here.

Follow the WOGA Twitter here and the Gymnastike Twitter here.

Edit Sunday evening: You can see the individual results for the International division, listing Emma and Jazminne, here.

Emma's beam here
Alicia Koloi's beam here
Jaz Cassis' beam here and bars here

It is a shame to see slips and errors, simply because these girls all have such wonderful presentation (and, in Cassis' case, unexpected explosive power as well) to be shown off to the world! They're only going to get better in time, that much is clear.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Camped-Down Ladies Sing This Song



Fancy some gymnastics watching in 2014?

Step right up and see our ladies fly!

To the USA, Italy and Qatar!

(update: Nedov and Cassis to the WOGA Classic!)

And watch out for the return of Aussie superstar Lauren Mitchell!

Georgia Godwin ready to jetset!

Happy Campers! - courtesy of Gymnastics Australia

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Aaaaaaaaaand we're back!

Greetings from 2014!

What a huge year in gymnastics it is gearing up to be, with the Commonwealth Games and World Championships just a fraction of what's on the calendar to discuss and dissect.

The anonymous comment function has been reinstated but I will continue to monitor the direction that comments are taking. I sincerely request that anything involving club matters or unconfirmed observations goes to the Australian Gymnastics Fan Message Board. It's free to use and easy to sign up. It was not set up by me, is not moderated by me, and the content is not officially endorsed by me. I just know it serves some chatter better, is password protected and allows for submitted messages to be edited at any time. And they'll probably find the answer certain queries with more detail and patience than I can, let's be honest. If I have to hear snarky one-liners about Queensland club politics one more time...!


So here we are, at the dawn of one of our most exciting years yet. 2013 was a rebuilding year for Australia, and now we get to see how the new pylons are looking.

* WAGs are currently in Canberra, undertaking their second camp for the new year period. Thus far, an Australian delegation is pencilled in for attendance at the upcoming WOGA Classic in Texas, confirmation on this is due soon.

* The men's side have big shoes to fill this year, with pint-sized legend Josh Jefferis announcing his retirement from gymnastics. Josh has represented his country proudly over the last decade, notching our highest World and Olympic all-around finishes, one even on home soil! We wish him the best in all that lies ahead.

* Australia continues its proud NCAA representation in America, with Shona Morgan and Nikola Chung both victorious in their respective schools' first meets of the season. Check out Shona's brand new floor for the Stanford lineup, and the 2014 promotional video for the Maryland Terrapins featuring Nikki. Both girls rock a pretty mean game face!

* Victorian MAG stalwart Tyson Bull has announced he is off in June to compete for the prestigious University of Illinois. The team boast some formidable skills and results, and Tyson's daring resume will no doubt serve him well in a brand new environment.

Here's to many, many more big and exciting gymnastics developments!