GC2018: RG Qualifications and Team Final

Australia has clinched team bronze at the end of the first day of Rhythmic Gymnastics competition at the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games, finishing third with a score of 120.800 behind Cyprus (130.625) and Malaysia (126.950).

It was vindication for the Australian Rhythmic Gymnastics team, who finished fifth in Glasgow.  In fact they finished above Canada, Wales and England who all bettered the Aussies in the team event four years ago – Malaysia was the only team to remain ranked higher than the Australians four years on, as Cyprus did not field a team in Glasgow.

Danielle Prince and Enid Sung erupted into tears of joy when it was confirmed that Australia would be appearing on the podium.  The ‘veterans’ of the team – at 25 and 23 years of age respectively – were overcome with both relief and pride that their routines – and bodies! – held up to the rest of the competition on the day.

Sung was stunning on her Commonwealth Games debut, with electric and near faultless performances in her Hoop, Clubs and Ribbon routines, just faltering slightly in ball and losing her apparatus momentarily, which cost her on the scoreboard.  She was the top-ranked Australian in the All-Around qualifications however, scoring 47.450 and going through to the All-Around final in sixth position.  Sung also qualified for Friday’s Individual Apparatus Finals, in Hoop, Clubs and Ribbon.

Despite it being her first major competition at the Senior International level, the youngest member of the Australian Gymnastics Team at GC2018, 16-year-old Alexandra Kiroi-Bogatyreva, looked right at home amongst the big time.  Despite a nervous start with her first apparatus – Hoop - Kiroi-Bogatyreva showed maturity beyond her years out on the competition, revelling in the support of the packed arena and performing superbly to both the judges and the adoring crowd.  High scores in Ball (12.250) and Ribbon (11.200) not only earnt her a place in these Apparatus Finals, but also a spot in the All-Around Final.  Ironically she qualified with exactly the same score as Sung; 47.450.

Prince made history when she took to the floor at the Gold Coast’s Coomera Indoor Sports Centre tonight, becoming the first Australian female gymnast – across any discipline – to compete in three Commonwealth Games.  However it wasn’t necessarily the fairy tale competition she was hoping for, with small errors in Clubs and Ribbon costing her on the scoreboard.  Prince finished a respectable 10th All-Around with a score of 47.200, however with only the top two athletes from each country advancing to Finals, Prince will miss out on tomorrow’s All-Around competition.

An emotional performance with the Ball however – to the tune of Bonnie Tyler’s ‘Total Eclipse of the Heart’ – captured both the audience and the judges’ attention alike, and a score of 12.150 to boot, which will see her advance to Friday’s Ball Final.  It’s safe to say that all of Australian will be gunning for a repeat performance from Prince in her favourite routine on Friday.

FULL RESULTS: https://results.gc2018.com/en/rhythmic-gymnastics/results-team-final-and-individual-qualification-qual-a0000204.htm

Competition continues in the Rhythmic Gymnastics tomorrow with the Individual All-Around Final.  Competition kicks off at 2pm at the Coomera Indoor Sports Centre.