The MAG Record Breakers in Liverpool

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Artur Davtyan

Athletes competing in men’s artistic gymnastics from 20 countries set, matched, or broke records for their nations at the world championships in Liverpool, England, making history in the sport and inspiring future generations of athletes to follow in their footsteps.

ARMENIA

It was a big year for Armenia, as all four specialists who qualified to worlds also qualified into every individual final they attempted, and three of those men ended up in the history books – including two with big medal moments.

Artur Davtyan became the first Armenian man to become a world champion when he took the gold on vault, breaking the seventh-place record he set in 2018.

On pommel horse, Harutyun Merdinyan won the second world bronze medal of his career, matching his podium finish from 2015.

Though Artur Avetisyan didn’t pick up a medal on rings, his fourth-place finish tied Artur Tovmasyan’s record set in 2018.

BRAZIL

Caio Souza’s fifth-place finish on vault tied the record set by Diego Hypolito in 2006, which was later also matched by Sergio Sasaki in 2013 and 2014.

CHINA

Zou Jingyuan won the third gold medal of his career on parallel bars here, which was also the 17th medal for China on this event in history. Having competed at 33 world championships where parallel bars has been contested, this means China has won more than half of the golds they’ve attempted here.

China also won the team title in Liverpool, making this the 13th time in history this has happened.

COLOMBIA

Jossimar Calvo finishing fifth place on parallel bars marks his and the country’s best finish here, beating his sixth-place record from 2018.

CYPRUS

Ilias Georgiou placed sixth in the high bar final, breaking the record he set in 2021, when he finished eighth.

EGYPT

Omar Mohamed finished 26th in all-around qualifications, breaking Ali Saki’s 36th-place record set in 1950.

GREAT BRITAIN

Giarnni Regini-Moran became the first British world champion on floor, taking over the top spot on this event from Neil Thomas, who won silver in 1993 and 1994, and Max Whitlock, who won silver in 2015.

Also winning a medal and breaking records was Courtney Tulloch on rings, where his bronze win broke his previous record on this apparatus, which was sixth place in 2014.

IRELAND

Rhys McClenaghan became the first world champion from Ireland on any apparatus with his gold medal win on pommel horse. He previously set the record for first world medal when he won bronze on the apparatus in 2019.

JAPAN

In winning the first world all-around title of his career after becoming the Olympic champion last year, Hashimoto Daiki is now the fifth Japanese man to have accomplished this, following Kenmotsu Eizo in 1970, Kasamatsu Shigeru in 1974, Tomita Hiroyuki in 2005, and Uchimura Kohei in 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014, and 2015.

JORDAN

Ahmad Abu Al Soud became the first Jordanian man to reach an apparatus final at world championships, and then days later, he became the first to win a medal when he took the silver, setting the record for the program.

KAZAKHSTAN

Nariman Kurbanov finished fourth on pommel horse, tying the record he set in 2021.

MOROCCO

Abderrazak Nasser finished 72nd in all-around qualifications, breaking Eddyanne Abdelwahed’s 100th-place record set in 1993.

NORWAY

Sofus Heggemsnes finished 19th in the all-around final, breaking Åge Storhaug’s 20th-place record set in 1966.

PERU

Edward Gonzales finished 69th in all-around qualifications, breaking Daniel Agüero’s 145th-place record set in 2015.

PHILIPPINES

In placing eighth all-around, Carlos Yulo improved on his program’s record here, breaking his own 10th-place record from 2019.

SPAIN

The Spanish men made the team final for the first time since 2007, and matched their ranking from that year as well by finishing sixth place.

SYRIA

Lais Najjar finished 49th in all-around qualifications, breaking Salah Cheikaib’s 108th-place record set in 1958.

TAIWAN

Tang Chia-Hung ended up in ninth place in the all-around final, improving on his 11th-place finish from 2019 to break his own record.

TURKEY

Adem Asil became the second man from Turkey to become the world champion on rings, joining Ibrahim Colak – who won in 2019 – as a record-holder for his program.

The Turkish team also had lots of success here, finishing 11th in qualifications, a big jump from the 15th-place record set in 2018 and then matched in 2019.

UNITED STATES

Brody Malone became the second American to become the world high bar champion, following in the footsteps of Kurt Thomas in 1979.

Article by Lauren Hopkins

21 thoughts on “The MAG Record Breakers in Liverpool

  1. The Yulo’s part is weird, since Sun Wei was injured & had to withdraw from Q, & Russia is banned, there are 3 less gymnasts from countries that regularly in top 6. So AA ranking 4-8th should only be 7-11th.

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    • None of that matters. You can’t asterisk every result and say “well, this would be different if this gymnast didn’t withdraw, that would be different if these athletes were here.”

      If you do this, you’d have to account for every athlete who isn’t here or who IS here but not performing at their best and say, well, if this person didn’t fall, this other person wouldn’t have medaled, and if these 10 guys who missed out on the vault final due to falls made it, this person wouldn’t have medaled, and if Simone Biles were here for WAG she would have won all-around and vault and floor, and if Nadia Comaneci were here, she would have gotten a perfect 10 on bars, and if the Soviet Union still existed, they would have won the team competition…

      Records are based on what actually happened at the competition, not what hypothetically could have happened if things had turned out differently for whatever reason.

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      • Result is one thing, but we are talking about “making history” so I think there should be more about opinions & relative facts rather than only what has happened at the competition.

        For Yulo’s case, being in top 8 is called “making history” by many of his fans, but for me it’s hardly history when it was helped by too many factors: the ban of Russia (political) & the injury of strong Chinese all-arounders (Sun Wei, Xiao Ruoteng, Yang Haonan). If it’s the case of Jessica Gadirova, despite the fact that she might not win AA bronze if Melnikova, Listunova or Urazova were allowed to compete, but I agree that she made history because she delivered such great performances. However, Yulo’s AA night was full of serious mistakes & falls, & “making history” shouldn’t be said when lucks, lots of lucks, play the major role in that.

        Many “if” can be questioned, I understand that. Like if Cheng Fei hadn’t fallen on VT & FX in Beijing, if Biles hadn’t touched the beam in Rio or had a mental problem in Tokyo…But there are cases where gymnasts who were not as good became the champions, their victory is well deserved. However, some victories, or even “history”, are not. Russia made history in badminton by winning first bronze at London Olympics, but if you read about the event you’ll see that such history is no more than a joke.

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        • I understand all of this. BUT records are part of history, and you can’t asterisk away someone’s ranking from this year just because certain individuals weren’t included. Yes, the standings would have been wildly different had Russia been here and had various athletes not been injured. But you also can’t claim that these athletes absolutely would have been in the top spots just because they have been in the past. Plenty of nations have missed various competitions for various reasons, and you can say the same, “well, if so and so were here, this final would have been different” about every single competition in history. Last year at worlds, for example, the field was missing half of the “regular” competitors who were taking breaks after worlds, so you could say that pretty much every single ranking in every single final would have been different. But for whatever reason, athletes didn’t compete and they’re not part of the official rankings. It doesn’t make the medalists or rankings any less important. These athletes won medals and ranked in these places, and therefore, they have made history with these achievements.

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      • Here’s my reply to your comment at 7:45 pm because I can’t reply to that haha.

        I understand your point, but I also said that with cases when gold favorites performed badly or strong contenders had to withdraw, those who won the titles or medals or at least achieved something are well deserved if they also deliver great performances.

        In your example of last year WCH, it’s true that many non-favorites won medals because various strong gymnasts didn’t participate. However, Kovtun in AA, Soravuo in FX, Maresca & Klimentev in SR, Medvedev in VT all had very good routines. But the same can’t be said about Yulo’s AA night. And to be called “making history” I think one should at least give a relatively good performance, not their best, but at least not as low as 82.098.

        P/s: I want to add some emojis to make my words less serious but am too lazy to do the looking up & copy/paste lol!

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        • I definitely understand where you’re coming from, and you’re right that it wasn’t an “historic” performance to have mistakes and falls, but this list ONLY goes by the rankings and records, not by the actual performance itself. In terms of where he landed, he “made history” because his 8th place ranking is OFFICIALLY in the FIG record books the top place the Philippines has ever received. Even if it wasn’t historically his best performance, he is officially ranked 8th here and no hypothetical situations can change that! I’ll have other recaps about how people actually performed but this one is just based on the numbers.

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        • ‘”making history” shouldn’t be said when lucks, lots of lucks, play the major role in that.’

          Wow! If we’re talking about history, most of historical events happened because of luck, lots of luck, such as Waterloo, D-Day, Franz Ferdinand assassination, Cleopatra rising to power… So those should be discounted as making history or historical because all was based on luck.

          Besides, Yulo has beaten in certain instances those other people who could have been present or performed at their best in these championships. Besides, that is a personal choice of putting asterisks and saying this person should be put lower if others were here and performed well. On the other hand, one can also say, Yulo could have placed MUCH higher if he performed at his best. He proved it during qualifications, after all, and that was also with at least a fall. So why not look at it that way instead? Because frankly speaking, Yulo could have medalled, even gotten the gold here, hypothetically speaking.

          It’s a funny proposition to “give context” to every competition. That would mean every result will be explained in detail. Funnier to give context only to Yulo’s results. That would mean personal issue with Yulo. Has anyone ever proposed contextualizing Yulo’s results where he could have gotten gold? So why now? Why these results?

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        • You cannot pick and choose what is historical or not or what stipulations or incidents caused certain events to unfold as they are.
          Everyone having historical results this year are exactly that…record breaking. Doesn’t matter that Russia and Belarus were banned, as there were multiple athletes that did not qualify to Worlds or simply declined Worlds even after qualifying. Additionally injuries happen all the time and often at the worst possible timing.

          There is no gray area it is strictly black and white.

          Liked by 1 person

        • Could not agree more! Especially because there is always going to be some sort of qualifier for every record that exists. Simone Biles withdrawing from AA competition in Tokyo doesn’t mean we can say “well Suni Lee is actually the silver medalist because she wouldn’t have won if Simone were here.” It’s the same thing with Carlos Yulo – he’s still the 8th place finisher regardless of who did or did not compete. I think everyone understands that should things have happened differently, the results for literally every competition that exists would be different, but for legitimate records and rankings, we can only go by what actually happened, not hypotheticals.

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  2. 1) There’s a saying in many sports, “you can only play against who’s in front of you.” Meaning, it’s not in your control who you are up against, so you just have to bring it every game. Same idea applies here.

    2) Lauren, thank you so much for all your reporting!! Especially covering MAG, which is soooo hard to find good coverage on. I just donated to your site (btw, you may want to move that button up higher, it was hard to find!). Your live blogs gave me something to look forward to every day this week.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Totally agree! There are no hypotheticals in sports results, and there are so many ifs, ands, or buts that could come in and change every result from every sporting event in history. Whether it’s a fully-attended competition with truly the best in the world all competing at the same time or 2020 Euros with only a handful of teams coming in, results are results, and sometimes a good performance in an amazing field means you place 24th and other times a rough performance in a weak field means you’re 1st. Results are still results!

      Also, thank you so much! I just got the email notification, I really appreciate it!! I had no idea where to add that button on this site, I only added it to begin with when someone asked if they could paypal me one time, but then forgot about it. 😅 But I’m really grateful, and glad my live blogs were useful and hopefully entertaining!

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  3. Totally agree with Lauren!!! You cant say if if if if no medal then is worthy because always can be a if people should accept the fact not now medals are won by all nations, no more big Four, everyone can win and are winning at any age! Age not important anymore, its reality.. well done Lauren for coverage, i watched on bbc but was on your page too for comments, great work!

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  4. For the discussion above, particularly about Yulo, I can summarize into this:
    1/ Gen:
    – Strong ones can’t attend/make mistakes + gymnast perform well = historic.
    – Strong ones can’t attend/make mistakes + gymnast perform badly = not historic.
    2/ Lauren:
    – What matters is things that actually happened.
    – Surrounding facts & details of performances will be discussed later in more specific articles, not in this summary.

    I think both opinions have their own rights. The way Lauren takes it has been done all the time, and many achievements relied a lot on luck. But Gen’s concern is also valid because a variety of “history making” records are laughable. In Yulo’s case, how it is written gives the impression of improvement (up from 10th in 2018 part) but it was actually degeneration in terms of form & helped by political & injury factors.

    In the most fair way, I think this “history making” achievement is still credible, but Lauren can add a few words like “despite the fact that strong AA contenders from Russia & China, who have consistently veen in top 6, can’t participate due to be banned/injuries, & Yulo underperformed with several falls & mistakes, this is still a historic achievement for the gymnast & the Philippines as…” I think it will give a more accurate picture instead of mere illusion but not dismiss the record based on numbers & results.

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  5. Too many so-called “history making” have been no more than a joke. The purpose of this is to make the sports more popular, and the same can be applied to Yulo’s case. His all-around final performance was a disaster, 3 solid top 6 from Russia & China couldn’t participate, yet Yulo’s 8th place was written like an triumph of improvement (upgrade from 10th in 2018) yet the actual result showed such degeneration. It’s okay to give information based on results & what actually happened. Yet the context is written to give such inaccurate picture, so it’s not okay! The illusion created by such “history” can be seen in one of the comment above, which one of Yulo’s fans believes that he could win the AA gold medal.😂😂

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    • It’s interesting that the people who are so anti-“history-making results” are only bringing up Yulo and no one else mentioned.

      Again, as I’ve repeated and repeated, there is no contextualizing or editorializing here. I am not saying “YULO IS CLEARLY THE GREATEST GYMNAST IN HISTORY NOW THAT HE HAS BESTED HIS PREVIOUS TOP AA PERFORMANCE!!!!” I am literally saying “his ranking this year is higher than how he ranked previously.” That’s simply a true statement and it’s mind-blowing how difficult it is for people to comprehend that this is just a list of records set here, nothing more.

      I don’t think almost anyone reading this is comprehending this as “breaking a record must mean that these performances are the greatest performances in history!” An 84 AA could be first place one year or 10th the next, but records are based on rankings, not on scores, subjectivity, or performance. No one is saying “well, I saw his performance in the AA, and it wasn’t great, he had several falls, BUT he ranked higher than he did with a great AA set a couple of years ago so clearly this performance is better.”

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      • If you watch the live chat of the Youtube livestream of AA final, you’ll see how people, particularly Yulo’s fans, understand things differently from what you just replied to what you just said in your reply to my comment. Also, we all understand what you meant even though we disagree with you. But as almost all the “anti” comments said, this kind of statistics has resulted in laughable “histories” or “records”.

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        • Yulo’s fans are mostly based in the Philippines and are obviously going to support a kid from their country regardless of what happens. These are the same people who were saying he should’ve won over Zou Jingyuan on PB not knowing anything about PB – they’re not gymnastics fans who learn about the code and the sport, they’re Yulo fans who are going to celebrate and demand golds on every event, I could write a whole paragraph about how this wasn’t his best worlds and they’d still claim he deserved gold on every event. I write for fans of the sport, not for fans of one athlete or country who aren’t as knowledgeable about gymnastics.

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  6. It’s so great to see many “smaller” gymnastic countries with medals this year. And yes, Yulo is amazing watch perform (and to thoughtfully respond to interview questions) and I can’t wait to see him in competition again.

    Liked by 1 person

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