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MCSMaria's Recap of 2013 Euros All Around Final

So the results are in from the Euros and everyone is preparing now for their big World Championships reveal.

As promised, I am posting recaps of the Euro's events in case you missed it or just want to relive the glory. The first thing I have to say is it was a fierce competition. Aliya Mustafina, Anastasia Grishina, Larisa Iordache were the triumphant victors on the podium stand after a fierce battle. For most of the competition, Larisa was the leader. Musty clawed her way up from third place to take her rightful place on

 Larisa Iordache came out in her yellow and black Pikachu leotard.
She wore it at last year's Euros, at the Olympics and now at this year's Euros. Must be her lucky leo or something. Must have worked because this chick was on fire. I have to say, with the Romanian team being depleted and all, it gives gymnasts like Larisa a chance to show their stuff. Girlfriend certainly did that. She started on beam which is definitely her strongest event. She works that beam like no one's business. What I like is her artistry and her execution, her toes are pointed, she connects her elements and she performs. This is what the code is talking about when it says to perform. She did the same on the floor exercise. Larisa carried the lead over through three rotations and was only bumped down to second when Aliya outscored her on the uneven bars, not her strongest event.

Aliya Mustafina was as determined as ever. She qualified in fourth and had a couple of good spills on the balance beam during qualifications and she was ready to fight for a place on the podium. She started on the dreaded balance beam, where she had those issues in qualifications. Aliya kept her ass on that beam alright and the audience wanted to make damned sure she did too. After every flight series, a ubiquitous "STOI!" kept echoing in the arena and after every tiny balance check. I have to say, I think that was more startling than anything else. It's really annoying when you're trying to concentrate and there is noise around you, but I digress. On floor exercise, she had the presence of a ballerina, especially in that red leotard with her hair in that tight bun. She looked like she was channeling Natalie Portman ala Black Swan. Nice dance, high tumbling, some ugly form in her execution but overall, very lovely. Bars is where she really shined. It certainly worked to Aliya's advantage for her end on her best event. She is the reigning Olympic Uneven Bars champion after all. She had higher difficulty than anyone else on that event and she had the highest execution on that event. Apart from some small leg separations and one instance of bent knees, her execution was textbook perfect. She had to be one of the only gymnasts to hit all of her handstands. Aliya received the highest score on the uneven bars at 15.166.

Elsewhere, Aliya's teammate, Anastasia Grishina could be seen trying to make her indelible mark on the minds of international gymnastics fans. She made her entrance with newly dyed blond hair. Certainly is an improvement over the previous light brown color she was sporting. Next, she can do something about those bangs. She started on the floor exercise with her Dr. Zhivago-esque floor music and her 2012 routine. On her first tumbling pass, she hit the floor with too much kinetic energy and bounced out of bounds. She rebounded quickly and stuck the rest of her landings and closed with a near perfect double pike. Anastasia rebounded again on vault, where she performed a beautiful executed double twisting Yurchenko with a clean landing. Coming off of the vault, Anastasia had the second highest uneven bars routine behind Aliya Mustafina, with a 15.033. Same as Aliya, near perfect execution, perfect handstands and soaring height on her flight elements. She finished with a full in back out dismount with a stuck landing and the director thought it would be a super good idea to show a slow mo high five between Anastasia and her coach, they also seemed to think it was a great idea to show her in slow mo chalking up the bars. Seriously, I'd rather watch paint dry, but whatever. Anastasia cinched her bronze medal finish with her balance beam routine, scoring a 14.133 with beautiful leaps and tumbling series. She had a small balance check on a side somi and  she took a small step on her double pike dismount, but she finished looking very pleased with herself.

I was disappointed that Diana Bulimar  did not medal during the all-around, but she didn't go down without a fight. A very spritely bouncy fight. She started off on the beam, which like her teammate Larisa Iordache is a good event for her.  She's very light on her feet on this event, she hops around on that beam with no problem. Diana had the highest floor exercise score of the night at 14.833,

My vote for a gymnast to watch is Giulia Steingruber of Switzerland. The tall (relatively speaking) Swiss blond tied with Bulimar for fourth place. She may not have medaled, but she has the mentality of a gold medalist, she's very poised. Giulia had the highest vault score of the night, a 15.066, .33 higher than Aliya Mustafina. Her double twisting Yurchenko had perfect block of the horse, perfect in flight form and height and most importantly, she stuck her landing. Giulia had impressive skills on every event and certainly she stands out. On the beam, where most athletes were dismounting with a tried and true back double pike dismount.  Giulia dsimounted her beam routine with a Gainer full. She was certainly chasing a medal in the all around and could have gotten a medal.

Tune in later for my recap of the Euro's event finals!

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