Rio Olympic champion Uladzislau Hancharou headlines first Trampoline World Cup in 201716/02/2017
Twelve Rio Olympians, including Olympic champion Uladzislau Hancharou of Belarus, are expected to compete at the first Trampoline World Cup of the year, which takes place at the National Gymnastics Arena in Baku (AZE) on February 18 – 19.
The season opener features Individual and Synchronised Trampoline Gymnastics and Tumbling competitions and is the first opportunity for the 83 registered gymnasts, who represent 15 different countries, to prove themselves on the basis of the new Code of Points that came into force on January 1.
For the Azerbaijan Gymnastics Federation, it is the second time it has staged the Trampoline World Cup, following the inaugural event in 2016, but the Tumbling events are a new addition this year. The qualification rounds are scheduled for Saturday and the finals for Sunday.
Hancharou’s toughest competition in Individual Trampoline is expected to come from Russia and Japan in the form of London Olympic silver medallist Dmitrii Ushakov (RUS) and Rio finalists Andrey Yudin (RUS), Ginga Munetomo (JPN) and Masaki Ito (JPN), who are also favourites in the Synchronised competition. There, they will be facing 2015 World bronze medallists Sebastien Martiny and Allan Morante of France and the Portuguese duo of Diogo Ganchinho and Diogo Abreu, who finished second in the 2016 world rankings. Mikhail Melnik (RUS), who won the 2016 world series with partner Sergei Azarian, teams up with rising talent Oleg Selyutin in Baku.
In both the women’s Individual and Synchronised competitions, Olympic finalists and 2014 and 2015 World silver medallists Tatsiana Piatrenia and Hanna Harchonak of Belarus stand out from the field. Their most likely challengers will be Russia’s Susana Kochesok and Anna Kornetskaya, the 2016 world ranking runners-up. Also look out for Rio Olympians Marine Jurbert (FRA) and Rana Nakano (JPN) in the Individual competition.
In Tumbling, the ones to watch will be reigning world silver medallist Lucie Colebeck (GBR) and multiple world champion and medallist Anna Korobeinikova (RUS) on the women’s side and 2013 world bronze medallist Grigory Noskov (RUS) on the men’s.
Hosts Azerbaijan registered Ilya Grishunin, Oleg Piunov, Ruslan Aghamirov, Sviatlana Makshtarova and Veronika Zemlianaia in the trampoline events, as well as Mikhail Malkin in Tumbling.