Russia, Romania Announce World Teams
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Gymnastics powerhouses Russia and Romania announced their respective entries for the upcoming world championships, which begin Oct. 16 in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.

Raluca Haidu (Romania)

Russia, the reigning European women's team champion, will send Ksenia Afanasyeva, Ksenia Semyonova, Tatiana Nabiyeva, Aliya Mustafina, Anna Dementyeva, Anna Myzdrikova and Yekaterina Kurbatova to Rotterdam.

The Russian men in Rotterdam will be Anton Golotsutskov, Maxim Devyatovsky, Sergei Khorokhordin, Igor Pakhomenko, Andrei Cherkasov, Dmitry Barkalov and David Belyavsky.

Romania will send Sandra Izbasa, Ana Porgras, Diana Chelaru, Raluca Haidu, Cerasela Patrascu, Gabriela Dragoi and Amelia Racea. The Romanian women have won the world team title seven times: 1979, 1987, 1994, 1995, 1997, 1999 and 2001.

Romania's men's team consists of Marian Dragulescu, Flavius Koczi, Ovidiu Buidoso, Cristian Bataga, Adrian Bucur, Marius Berbecar and Robert Stanescu.

Each nation can send up to six gymnasts with additional alternates. Finalized entries are due at the FIG offices on Saturday, exactly three weeks before the competition begins.

Both nations have one more competition prior to the world championships to help determine lineups. On Saturday, Romania will meet Germany and Switzerland for a tri-meet, while Russia will compete this weekend at the Dynamo Cup in Penza.

Mircea Apolzan, secretary general of the Romanian Gymnastics Federation, said Romania is aiming for medals in Rotterdam, but also individual progression toward the 2012 Olympics in London.

"We're not focusing on immediate results, but the crystallization of the teams for the world championships next year and especially at the Olympics in 2012," Apolzan said. "There definitely may be changes to the team lineups, depending on health or strategy. We might consider the last competition, the tri-meet in Switzerland, and if need be we will make any necessary changes."

External Link: Official 2010 World Championships Website

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