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Written by Amanda Turner    Thursday, 03 November 2016 15:51    PDF Print
Mustafina Marries Bobsledder Zaitsev
(15 votes, average 4.00 out of 5)



World and Olympic champion Aliya Mustafina married her boyfriend Alexei Zaitsev, becoming the third member of Russia's gymnastics team to tie the knot since the Olympic Games in Rio.

World and Olympic champion Aliya Mustafina has married bobsledder Alexei Zaitsev, becoming the third member of Russia's gymnastics team to tie the knot since the Olympic Games in Rio.

"Aliya married Alexei Zaitsev in a wedding held at the groom's home in Krasnodar," said her father, 1976 Olympic wrestling bronze medalist Fargat Mustafin, to the TASS agency on Thursday. "I am very happy for my daughter."


Zaitsev is a hopeful for the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang.

Mustafina, who turned 22 on September 30, won three medals at the recent Olympics in Rio: silver with the team, bronze in the all-around and a gold medal on uneven bars, matching three of her medals from the 2012 Olympic Games in London. She is the 2010 world all-around champion, 2013 European all-around champion and 2015 European Games all-around champion.

The pair have reportedly been dating since the fall of 2015. Zaitsev also turned 22 on September 17, two weeks before Mustafina.

Zaitsev is a hopeful for the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, and has been competing internationally in both the two-man and four-man events. At the 2016 World Championships, held in February in Igls, Austria, Zaitsev was a member of the eighth-place Russian team in the four-man event.

Mustafina, who competed in Rio despite a back injury, indicated after the Olympics she planned to take some time off and rest before considering a return for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. She is currently studying at the Russian State University of Physical Education, Sport, Youth and Tourism in Moscow.

"I want to graduate, to become a mother and raise children. And my childhood dream – to go to the moon," she said last week. "I'm tired of the gym and I want to relax. If I miss the gym, then, I'll come back. I'm thinking about how to do something for the development of gymnastics, rather than coaching."

Mustafina joins recent newlyweds on the Russian Olympic team Denis Ablyazin, who married long-time girlfriend Ksenia Semyonova in September; and David Belyavsky, who married his girlfriend Maria this past weekend in Greece.

 
Written by IG Staff    Sunday, 30 October 2016 10:06    PDF Print
Romania's Forminte Eager to Seize 'Second Chance'
(2 votes, average 5.00 out of 5)



Recently appointed Romanian team coach Nicolae Forminte said he is eager to get the team back on track after it failed to qualify for this summer's Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

In an exclusive interview in the November 2016 issue of International Gymnast magazine, recently appointed Romanian team coach Nicolae Forminte said he is eager to get the team back on track after it failed to qualify for this summer's Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

"One of the priorities in my program of preparation would be to modernize and optimize the preparation on uneven bars, but also to find ways to pleasantly surprise the judges," said Forminte, who also served as the team's coach from 2005-10. "I'm sure that all my efforts will not be possible without the support of the Romanian Gymnastics Federation, which I want to thank for giving me a second chance to prepare the national team."

Read the complete interview in the November 2016 issue of International Gymnast magazine. To subscribe to the print and/or digital edition, click here.

 
Written by Amanda Turner    Wednesday, 19 October 2016 05:48    PDF Print
Morinari Watanabe Elected President of FIG
(6 votes, average 5.00 out of 5)



Japan's Morinari Watanabe was elected the president of the International Gymnastics Federation on Wednesday in Tokyo, succeeding Italy's Bruno Grandi, who is retiring from his post after 20 years.

Japan's Morinari Watanabe was elected the president of the International Gymnastics Federation on Wednesday, succeeding Italy's Bruno Grandi, who is retiring from his post after 20 years.

Watanabe, elected at the 81st FIG Congress in Tokyo, is the ninth president in the history of the federation. He is the first non-European to lead the governing body for the sport.

Watanabe defeated France's Georges Guelzec, president of the European Union of Gymnastics, earning 100 votes to 19 for Guelzec.

"I'd like to thank the people who believed in me and voted for me," Watanabe said in his acceptance speech. "I am proud to have become president. The time to bring innovation to gymnastics has come. Gymnastics will be the king of sports."

Watanabe, 57, has been the secretary general of the Japan Gymnastics Association since 2010, and was elected to the FIG Executive Committee four years ago. An international businessman, he attended university in Sofia and is fluent in Bulgarian. He ran on a platform of increasing the popularity of the sport of gymnastics around the world. His technical proposals include establishing an official coaches' committee at the FIG, similar to the committee of athletes' representatives.

Watanabe's election makes him the only Japanese president of the governing body for an Olympic sport.

"I hope he will make efforts for the growth of world gymnastics and the Olympic movement, advance internationalization and enhance the presence of the Japanese sports community," said Japanese Olympic Committee president Tsunekazu Takeda said.

Watanabe's election caps off a thrilling 2016 for Japanese gymnastics. In August, the Japanese men won the Olympic team title in Rio de Janeiro, where Kohei Uchimura defended his all-around title. The 2020 Olympic Games will be in Tokyo.

Italy's Donatella Sacchi, who ran unopposed, was elected president of the Women's Technical Committee, succeeding Belarusian Nelli Kim, who was first elected in 2004. Kim was elected vice president of the FIG along with China's Luo Chaoyi (China) and Vasily Titov (Russia).

American Steve Butcher, who also ran unopposed, was re-elected president of the Men's Technical Committee. Russia's Natalia Kuzmina (Rhythmic Technical Committee) and Horst Kunze (Trampoline Technical Committee) were also re-elected as committee presidents.

Ali Al Hitmi (Qatar), Youssef Altabbaa (Syria), Jesus Carballo (Spain), Ron Galimore (United States), Kim Dong Min (Korea), Jani Tanskanen (Finland) and Martin Reddin (Great Britain) were elected to the FIG Executive Committee.

Holger Albrecht (Germany), Julio Marcos (Spain), Arturs Mickevics (Latvia) and Hiroyuki Tomita (Japan) were re-elected to the Men's Technical Committee. Jeff Thomson (Canada) and Andrew Tombs (Great Britain) were elected as new members, while Huang Liping (China) and Han Yoon Soo (Korea) were not re-elected.

Four members of the Women's Technical Committee were re-elected: Lyubov Burda Andrianova (Russia), Kym Dowdell (Australia), Naomi Valenzo (Mexico), and Zhou Qiurui. Canada's Yelena Davydova and Syria's Radie Zinal were elected as new members. Austria's Johanna Gratt and American Tatiana Perskaia came up short in their bids to make the committee.

External Link: 2016 FIG Election Results

Presidents of the International Gymnastics Federation

CongressPresidentCountry
11881LiègeNicolas J. Cupérus Belgium
21924ParisCharles Cazalet France
31933LausanneAdam Zamoyski Poland
41946GenevaFélix Goblet d'Alviella Belgium
51956ViennaCharles Thoeni Switzerland
61966DortmundArthur Gander Switzerland
71976MontrealYuri Titov Soviet Union
81996AtlantaBruno Grandi Italy
92016TokyoMorinari Watanabe Japan

 
Written by John Crumlish    Tuesday, 11 October 2016 08:36    PDF Print
Hernandez A 'True Pleasure' To Coach, Says Haney
(5 votes, average 4.20 out of 5)

In an interview in the October 2016 issue of International Gymnast magazine, MG Elite coach Maggie Haney said that coaching 2016 Olympic gold and silver medalist Laurie Hernandez has enriched her life.

“It has been a true pleasure to coach Laurie since she was just a little girl,” said Haney, who also coaches 2014 U.S. junior all-around champion Jazmyn Foberg and 2016 U.S junior all-around silver medalist Riley McCusker. “She has made my day-to-day life better. I love her like my own daughter.”

A native of Richardson, Texas, Haney attended North Carolina State on a full ride and became the first Wolfpack gymnast to score a 10.0 (balance beam).

Read the complete interview with Haney in the October 2016 issue of International Gymnast magazine. To subscribe to the print and/or digital editions, click here.

 
Written by Amanda Turner    Friday, 23 September 2016 08:57    PDF Print
Ferrari Undergoes Double Achilles' Tendon Surgery
(3 votes, average 5.00 out of 5)



Three-time Italian Olympian Vanessa Ferrari underwent surgery Thursday on both her Achilles' tendons, she shared with fans.

Three-time Italian Olympian Vanessa Ferrari underwent surgery Thursday on both her Achilles' tendons, she shared with fans.


Ferrari at the clinic after her surgery

Ferrari had a repair on her left ankle at a clinic Brescia, where she also used the opportunity to clean up her right Achilles' tendon. Ferrari, the 2006 world champion and 2007 European champion, shared photos from the clinic after undergoing surgery, which she said went well.

"I'm still a bit knocked out by anesthesia, otherwise it looks all right," posted Ferrari, who has struggled with foot and ankle issues since 2008. "Since I was here, we also touched up the right one!"

Ferrari was back at her Brescia gym on Friday, albeit in a wheelchair, her left leg in a heavy cast.

Despite the disappointment of a second consecutive fourth-place finish on floor exercise at the Olympic Games, Ferrari has said she is not done with the sport. She held off on a retirement announcement after the Olympics in Rio, taking a vacation in Sardinia to regroup.

But along with the news of her planned surgery, Ferrari shared with fans that she wants to come back. "I have no plans to retire," she said last week.. "If all goes well, I will still have something to say."

But Ferrari, who turns 26 in November, said she intends to take her time before returning to competition. She plans to take the next six months to rest and rehabilitate before heading back to the gym.

 


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