Officially, here are the 12 teams qualified to Tokyo 2020.
1. United States 174.205
2. China 169.161
3. Russia 168.080
7. Great Britain
Down under they’ll be complaining that a draw in the first session cost them a team spot in the Olympics. I believe the Aussies are right. Scores DID escalate over the two days.
Brazil will be even more disappointed. Jade Barbosa was injured during the competition. They ended up finishing 14th.
Spain is the happiest nation. Roxana Popa made it back, her first Worlds since 2015. AND she qualified for Tokyo. All that rehab and training paid off.
- Though it will be some weeks before FIG publishes the medical report from Stuttgart, I’m quite sure there have been fewer injuries on the competition floor (so far) than at past Worlds. Vault remains the most dangerous apparatus; competition landing mats the greatest risk.
- biggest story of the day was Russia competing well with no falls after DRAMA, DRAMA, DRAMA leading up to this competition.
- a bigger story would have been Japan not qualifying to their own Olympics after not naming Worlds #2 2018 Mai Murakami to Stuttgart. Happily, the team did a great job and did qualify. Whew.
- Melnikova was the single biggest AA performance up to the USA. Looks great.
- Argentina the fastest rising team in 2019. Respect for those athletes and coaches.
- GBR did have a bad meet. They are relieved to have qualified. Ellie Downie killed it as last Vault for the team, qualifying to the apparatus final.
- many nations around the world had no legal way to watch the competition. Some tried watching the FIG YouTube stream using a VPN and logging in from places that had no purchased broadcast rights. Egypt, for example. We continue to do a crappy job of marketing this wonderful sport.
- NED made Netherlands and the rest of the world nervous after a shaky start on Beam. They finished strong to get to Tokyo. One of the most entertaining and artistic competitors.
- Giulia Steingruber (age 25) is back too. So much leg power. Impressive. But neither her Swiss team nor Hungary could break into the top 12 for Olympic qualification.
- Eythora Thorsdottir was my favourite Floor routine, so far. Zero deduction for Artistry. I felt her score was too low.
- Make no mistake. Italy could be top 3. Soon. Soon. So much potential. But it didn’t happen today.
Finally, I’m happy for the home crowd that Germany did qualify a full team to Tokyo.