Germany’s Top Women to Represent at Cottbus

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If there’s one thing we can expect at the annual Cottbus World Challenge Cup, it’s big performances from the host country’s stars.

This year, Germany’s three best performers – 2015 world beam medalist Pauline Schäfer, 2015 world bars finalist Sophie Scheder, and 2012 Olympian Elisabeth Seitz – will headline the field, which includes 44 women, many of whom are experienced competitors at the world and Olympic level.

In addition to the Germans, we’ll also see Lisa Top and Sanne Wevers, both of whom played integral roles in helping the Netherlands qualify a full team to the 2016 Olympic Games. They’re joined by teammate Noel van Klaveren in her return to international competition since dealing with an injury last year. Van Klaveren was unable to contend for a spot at worlds, choosing instead to rest and get healthy for this season, but if she brings her DTY back on vault she could be a major contributor for the Dutch this summer.

Other big names include six-time Olympian Oksana Chusovitina of Uzbekistan, two-time Olympian Marta Pihan-Kulesza of Poland, and 2012 Olympian Simona Castro of Chile, all of whom are seeking to add to their resumes by qualifying spots at the test event next month. Cottbus will be crucial in their preparation, and they are each expected to compete on all four events here.

We’ll also see the rising Swedish stars Emma Larsson, who already has two World Challenge Cup silver medals to her name this year, and Jonna Adlerteg, the fabulous bars worker who is mounting a comeback from her injury at Euros last year. Baku silver medalist on vault Tjasa Kysselef of Slovenia will also compete alongside teammate Teja Belak.

In addition to these experienced women, the field includes several young gymnasts making senior debuts, including Liu Jinru, Lu Yufei, and Wu Jing of China. They’re joined by Zhu Xiaofang, the 1999-born worlds alternate who excels on bars. While none of these is considered a top contender for China’s Olympic team this year, the competition here will be the first time most are judged at the FIG international level, which will be a big help when it comes to putting their routines in perspective with their more experienced teammates.

The World Challenge Cup in Cottbus will be held from March 31 through April 3. A full list of MAG and WAG contenders is below.

ARGENTINA
Nicolas Cordoba
Federico Molinari
Ailen Valente
Maria Stoffel
AUSTRIA
Vinzenz Höck
Daniel Kopeinik
Fabian Leimlehner
Christopher Remkes
Matthias Schwab
Prashanth Sellathurai
Jasmin Mader
BELGIUM
Maxime Gentges
Dennis Goossens
Siemon Volkaert
BRAZIL
Fellipe Arakawa
Angelo Assumpcao
Henrique Flores
Diego Hypolito
CHILE
Simona Castro
CHINA
Qu Ruiyang
Wang Bo
Wang Haoran
Weng Hao
Wu Di
Zhu Xiaodong
Liu Jinru
Lu Yufei
Wu Jing
Zhu Xiaofang
CROATIA
Ferdinand Durgel
Kresimir Majdandzic
Renato Prpic
CYPRUS
Dimitris Krasias
Michalis Krasias
CZECH REPUBLIC
Veronika Cenkova
Eva Mickova
DENMARK
Victoria Gilberg
Linnea Wang
FINLAND
Juho Kanerva
Heikki Saarenketo
Tomi Tuuha
Markku Vahtila
Sakari Vekki
GERMANY
Andreas Bretschneider
Lukas Dauser
Christopher Jursch
Sebastian Krimmer
Marcel Nguyen
Andreas Toba
Pauline Schäfer
Sophie Scheder
Elisabeth Seitz
GREAT BRITAIN
Dominick Cunningham
Louis Smith
Ashley Watson
GREECE
Georgios Chatziefstathiou
Nikolaos Iliopoulos
Christoforos Konstantinidis
Dimitrios Markousis
Antonios Tantalidis
Evangelia Plyta
Maria Simou
Mina Vartholomaiou
Ioanna Xoulogi
HUNGARY
Adam Babos
Norbert Dudas
Botond Kardos
David Vecsernyes
ISRAEL
Artem Dolgopyat
Andrey medvedev
Moran Yanuka
LATVIA
Vitalijs Kardasovs
Sergejs Poznakovs
Dmitrijs Trefilovs
Valerija Grisane
LITHUANIA
Tomas Kuzmickas
Robert Tvorogal
MEXICO
Kevin Cerda
Daniel Corral
NETHERLANDS
Lisa Top
Noel van Klaveren
Sanne Wevers
NORWAY
Marcus Conradi
Pietro Giachino
Odin Kalvo
Stian Skjerahaug
Linn Finstad
Martine Magnussen
PANAMA
Isabella Amado
PERU
Ariana Orrego
POLAND
Lukasz Borkowski
Sebastian Cecot
Adam Kierzkowski
Filip Sasnal
Dawid Weglarz
Piotr Wieczorek
Gabriela Janik
Klara Kopec
Marta Pihan-Kulesza
PUERTO RICO
Paula Mejias
SLOVAKIA
Slavomir Michnak
Samuel Piasecky
SLOVENIA
Saso Bertoncelj
Alen Dimic
Luka Kisek
Rok Klavora
Ziga Silc
Teja Belak
Ivana Kamnikar
Tjasa Kysselef
Adela Sajn
SOUTH AFRICA
Tiaan Grobler
Cameron Mackenzie
Tabo Mkandawire
Angela Maguire
SPAIN
Ruben Lopez
Andres Martin
Joel Plata
Alberto Tallon
Kevin Traid
Adria Vera
Laura Bechdeju
Nora Fernandez
SWEDEN
Jonna Adlerteg
Emma Larsson
SWITZERLAND
Christian Baumann
Pablo Brägger
Pascal Bucher
Benjamin Gischard
UKRAINE
Maksym Semiankiv
Oleg Verniaiev
Illia Yehorov
Darya Kloptsova
Alisa Zadvorna
UZBEKISTAN
Eduward Shaulov Dilnoza Abdusalimova
Oksana Chusovitina

Article by Lauren Hopkins

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