Kysselef On Top in Maribor

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Tjasa Kysselef celebrated a great victory at the 2015 Salamunov Memorial competition held in Maribor in her home country of Slovenia this weekend, capturing the title with a 49.85 despite struggling on beam.

The gymnast, who saw great success on vault during the world cup circuit in 2015, doesn’t compete on all four events very often, but used the opportunity in Maribor to prepare for worlds, where she’ll have to compete all events if she wants to help her country earn a spot at the test event in Rio next year.

Kysselef posted the top scores on vault with a 14.25 and floor with a 12.95, showing steady work on both. Her scores on bars (11.35) and beam (11.3) were a bit low, though she’s not as experienced on either and actually looked okay for the most part, despite a fall on the latter.

In second was the first-year senior Kitti Honti of Hungary, also preparing for worlds, which will be her first time on the major international stage. She had the second-best score on bars with an 11.95, and the third-best on beam and floor, with an 11.8 and 12.2. She did have some problems on beam, but her floor was hit and looked great.

Aleksandra Rajcic of Serbia was a bit of a surprise for third place, especially considering she had falls on bars and beam. With a 45.8 total, Rajcic looked best on vault with a 12.8 and floor with a 12.15, hitting both very well.

Rounding out the top eight were Katharina Puffer of Austria with a 44.65, Sara King of Slovenia with a 43.35, Michaela Eidenberger of Austria with a 42.9, Onedia Reci of Albania with a 42.8, and Radoslava Kalamarova of Slovakia with a 42.75; Kalamarova was actually expected to reach the podium, but had a disaster of a meet, falling multiple times on beam and floor to earn scores of 9.7 and 9.3 there; her bars score of 11.5 came from a hit routine, however, and was the third-best on the event at this meet.

Petra Furac of Croatia won the vault silver medal with a 12.725 average and Hungary’s Eniko Horvath had bronze there with a 12.3 average. Horvath didn’t compete in the all-around, but likely would’ve won the meet had she done all four events, as she had a one-vault score of 13.45, the highest beam score of 12.75, and the second-best floor score of 12.65, a very strong day for the young woman. Slovenian gymnasts Ivana Kmanikar and Carmen Horvat also did well on their events, with Kamnikar posting the top bars score of 12.05 and Horvat showing good work on beam to finish with the second-best score of 12.3.

In the junior division, Farah Salem of Egypt won the all-around with a dominant performance, earning a 49.3 total in addition to posting the best junior scores on bars with an 11.7 and beam with a 12.6, as well as the second-best score of 12.35 on floor.

Pia Hribar of Slovenia was second with a 46.9 while Egypt’s Rahaf Armia Zakaria was third with a 46.4. Hribar had the top score of 12.8 on floor, the second-best beam score of 11.75, and the third-best bars score of 10.65, while Zaharia took the silver medals on both vault (averaging 12.9) and floor (12.35).

Nabil Merize Zaki of Egypt won the vault title with a 13.05 average in addition to winning bronze on beam with an 11.35, Andjela Djurdjevic of Serbia won silver on bars with an 11.1, and Yasser Yara Abdela of Egypt was the vault bronze medalist with a 12.75 average.

Full results from the Salamunov Memorial are available here.

Article by Lauren Hopkins

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