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The day after the Chinese men’s program took home the team gold medal at the Summer Universiade in Chengdu, the women’s team repeated the feat, earning a 163.029 to finish more than two points ahead of Japan.

Led by 2020 Olympian Ou Yushan, who topped the all-around field with a 55.198, the team included a mix of current world championships contenders and veterans, including her Tokyo teammate Zhang Jin, who contributed strong scores on beam and floor, 2018 world bronze medalist Luo Huan, who had her best performance in years to qualify in fourth place with a 53.766, and world cup medalist Du Siyu, who had the team’s best score on bars with a 14.366 to qualify first into the final.

The biggest surprise here was two-time world bars medalist Wei Xiaoyuan missing both her bars and beam routines, with bars especially shocking after she hit four strong routines at nationals in May. Unfortunately, this means we won’t see her in any individual finals here, though I doubt it will affect her chances at making the worlds team.

Japan’s star athlete, Miyata Shoko, led her team to the silver medal with a 54.600 in the all-around, while her 2022 worlds teammate Sakaguchi Ayaka also had an excellent day, qualifying in third with a 54.198. Both athletes contributed all four of their scores into the team’s total of 160.663 in addition to qualifying into all four individual finals, an incredible feat that should result in a sweet medal haul for the Japanese program.

Also on the team for Japan were bars standout Fukasawa Kokoro, who unfortunately had a miss on that event here, vault and floor specialist Ushioku Kohane, who was strong in her second-ever international competition after making her world cup debut earlier this year, and Hatakeda Chiaki, who competed in the all-around with especially good work on vault and floor, with the latter counting toward the team total.

The fight for the bronze medal was always going to be a toss-up between a few of the remaining teams here, especially as most generally strong programs opted to send athletes who don’t typically earn international assignments, especially Germany and South Korea. In the end, it was Spain that landed on the podium with a 146.431, led by 2022 worlds team member Maia Llacer, who was also Spain’s top all-arounder with a 50.699 to qualify to the final in sixth place. The team struggled a bit on beam, but put up the third-best overall floor score of the meet and generally looked great, especially considering they only brought four competitors. Making the all-around final along with Llacer was this year’s national beam silver medalist Lorena Medina, who also made the vault and floor finals, while Llacer made bars and floor.

Taiwan came within half of a point of the podium with a 145.928 with a team that included 2020 Olympian Ting Hua-Tien and the super experienced Lai Pin-Ju, who was the team’s best all-around with a 48.732 for 10th place, while Ting had a miss on her best event, beam, though still managed to qualify into the all-around final with a 47.732 for 13th place.

Rounding out the top eight were South Korea in fifth with a 144.096, with Lee Dayeong – the most internationally recognizable athlete on the team – finishing ninth all-around with a 49.599; Germany in sixth with a 142.697 (2016 Olympic medalist Sophie Scheder had the fourth-best bars score in the competition, but unfortunately had three falls on beam); Finland in seventh with a 135.396; and Slovenia in eighth with a 100.331 (this team only put up two scores on every event but bars, thus the low score).

The top individual all-rounders in the competition included Tisha Volleman of the Netherlands in seventh with a 50.599, Bianca Frysak of Austria in eighth with a 49.865, and Dominika Ponizilova of Czechia in 12th with a 47.832. All three should be top contenders for their countries’ worlds teams this year, so it was nice seeing them get some extra experience here, especially as they each made all-around and apparatus finals (Volleman on bars and floor, Frysak on beam, and Ponizilova on vault). Another standout was Barbora Mokosova of Slovakia, who competed only two events, but performed brilliantly on bars and beam to reach both finals.

The complete team final ranking is below, as are the lists of the all-around and apparatus final qualifiers (italicized athletes are not eligible to compete in the finals due to the two-per-country limitations).

Team Final Results

1. China 163.029
2. Japan 160.663
3. Spain 146.431
4. Taiwan 145.928
5. South Korea 144.096
6. Germany 142.697
7. Finland 135.396
8. Slovenia 100.331

All-Around Qualification Results

1. Ou Yushan, China, 55.198
2. Miyata Shoko, Japan, 54.600
3. Sakaguchi Ayaka, Japan, 54.198
4. Luo Huan, China, 53.766
5. Hatakeda Chiaki, Japan, 50.932
6. Maia Llacer, Spain, 50.699
7. Tisha Volleman, Netherlands, 50.599
8. Bianca Frysak, Austria, 49.865
9. Lee Dayeong, South Korea, 49.599
10. Lai Pin-Ju, Taiwan, 48.732
11. Lorena Medina, Spain, 48.700
12. Dominika Ponizilova, Czechia, 47.832
13. Ting Hua-Tien, Taiwan, 47.732
14. Yun Boeun, South Korea, 47.499
15. Lin Yi-Chen, Taiwan, 47.298
16. Aiyu Zhu, Germany, 47.264
17. Elisabeth Wagner, Germany, 47.100
18. Irene Calle, Spain, 46.732
19. Ilayda Sahin, Türkiye, 46.365
20. Bilge Tarhan, Türkiye, 45.932
21. Amanda Edwards, Australia, 45.831

R1. Sara King, Slovenia, 45.765
R2. Lara Demarsico, Argentina, 45.398
R3. Sara Loikas, Finland, 45.132
R4. Malla Montell, Finland, 44.666

Vault Qualification Results

1. Miyata Shoko, Japan, 13.866
2. Sakaguchi Ayaka, Japan, 13.683
3. Ushioku Kohane, Japan, 13.416
4. Dominika Ponizilova, Czechia, 12.866
5. Kim Seohyeon, South Korea, 12.833
6. Bilge Tarhan, Türkiye, 12.783
7. Wu Sing-Fen, Taiwan, 12.716
8. Lorena Medina, Spain, 12.650
9. Lai Pin-Ju, Taiwan, 12.566

R1. Gulnaz Jumabekova, Uzbekistan, 12.533
R2. Maia Llacer, Spain, 12.516
R3. Meta Kunaver, Slovenia, 12.316

Uneven Bars Qualification Results

1. Du Siyu, China, 14.366
2. Luo Huan, China, 14.200
3. Ou Yushan, China, 14.166
4. Sophie Scheder, Germany, 13.733
5. Barbora Mokosova, Slovakia, 13.333
6. Miyata Shoko, Japan, 13.300
7. Tisha Volleman, Netherlands, 13.233
8. Sakaguchi Ayaka, Japan, 13.200
9. Wei Xiaoyuan, China, 13.166
10. Maia Llacer, Spain, 12.800

R1. Bianca Frysak, Austria, 12.466
R2. Elisabeth Wagner, Germany, 12.400
R3. Yun Boeun, South Korea, 12.300

Balance Beam Qualification Results

1. Ou Yushan, China, 14.200
2. Miyata Shoko, Japan, 13.800
3. Luo Huan, China, 13.700
4. Sakaguchi Ayaka, Japan, 13.666
5. Zhang Jin, China, 13.333
6. Fukasawa Kokoro, Japan, 12.900

7. Lee Dayeong, South Korea, 12.766
8. Wu Sing-Fen, Taiwan, 12.666
9. Wei Xiaoyuan, China, 12.566
10. Bianca Frysak, Austria, 12.433
11. Barbora Mokosova, Slovakia, 12.433

R1. Maia Llacer, Spain, 12.300
R2. Tisha Volleman, Netherlands, 12.233
R3. Lin Yi-Chen, Taiwan, 11.866

Floor Exercise Qualification Results

1. Ou Yushan, China, 13.766
2. Miyata Shoko, Japan, 13.500
3. Sakaguchi Ayaka, Japan, 13.266
4. Zhang Jin, China, 13.266
5. Hatakeda Chiaki, Japan, 12.966
6. Ushioku Kohane, Japan, 12.866
7. Luo Huan, China, 12.666

8. Maia Llacer, Spain, 12.533
9. Tisha Volleman, Netherlands, 12.433
10. Lee Dayeong, South Korea, 12.400
11. Lorena Medina, Spain, 12.400

R1. Bianca Frysak, Austria, 12.266
R2. Lai Pin-Ju, Taiwan, 12.233
R3. Ting Hua-Tien, Taiwan, 12.133


By: Lauren
Title: Chinese Women Victorious in Universiade Performance
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Published Date: Thu, 03 Aug 2023 23:38:32 +0000

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Why the U.S. Worlds Team is Perfect and Exactly What We Wanted



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The U.S. trials for both the world championships and Pan American Games teams were held over the past couple of days, with an all-around competition held on Tuesday, followed by a more relaxed situation where the athletes could pick two events. A couple of hours after the second day of competition concluded, the selection committee had two full teams ready to go, with the worlds team pretty strategically perfect, at least based on my very specific qualifications.

My impression of the first night was that many athletes looked exhausted and not quite up to the task, especially given how late in the day the competition was, and how long things dragged on, with each rotation taking around 45 minutes, double what these athletes are used to at elite meets.

The fatigue affected some of the best, including Simone Biles, who had some uncharacteristically weak form at various points throughout the night, which caused a fall on her van Leeuwen and some smaller mistakes on beam and floor. In her final event, Biles over rotated her Yurchenko double pike on vault, which ended up looking like more of a timer as she threw the skill to her back, but she nonetheless won the competition with a 55.700, down several points from what she showed she was capable of at nationals, but still enough to finish in first place and automatically qualify to the worlds team.

Coming closest was Shilese Jones, who had a very strong meet going up until bars. Actually, I’d Include bars as part of her strong meet, as the routine was excellent, and the mistake that ended up costing her a full point in deductions – a brush of her feet on the mat after her Pak salto – didn’t affect her rhythm at all to the point where it wasn’t noticeable to anyone watching. The view of her feet was cut off for the viewer watching on the stream, but while you’d still notice a flaw in the gymnast’s movements in most cases like these, Jones seamlessly continued into the rest of her routine and finished well. When her score came up as 13.5, it was shocking, but on the second day she came back sans foot drama, connected the Pak to van Leeuwen, increased her difficulty score to a 6.5 – third highest in the world – and scored a 14.75 total, once again proving what a threat she is for a bars medal.

Skye Blakely came into this trial as one of my three locks for the team along with Biles and Jones, and everything she did here to finish third all-around confirmed this opinion. Her floor still isn’t really usable, but she offers so much on bars and beam, both of which have been so consistent this season, and her vault is yet another solid Yurchenko double full, which the team might not need, though could use in a pinch if needed. She did have a fall on a bars release on day two, but with everything else she’s done there this year, this mistake changed absolutely nothing for me.

Rounding out the top five were Joscelyn Roberson and Leanne Wong, though they would have been my next team picks regardless of where they had fallen in the all-around rankings. While they weren’t locks for me in the sense that there were a few other solid options and I wasn’t sure if the selection committee would match my brainwaves, they were the two I wanted most to round out the team, filling the roles of a strong multi-event specialist as well as a well-balanced utility player who might not be a top-scoring athlete on any event, but who is absolutely vital to the team thanks to her ability to step in anywhere and score nearly as well.

In the latter role, Wong was the clear winner for me. She came into this season for the first time at the U.S. Classic in August, finishing second all-around, and then surprised to win all-around bronze at nationals with even-keeled and solid performances on every apparatus across both days of competition. Wong, who stuck with her Florida coaches this year instead of going back to GAGE, has been at a level we’ve never quite seen from her – maybe not gymnastically, exactly, as we’ve seen her look strong before and with higher difficulty in some areas, but in terms of her confidence and the joy she’s bringing to every performance.

I’ve always been a fan of built-in alternates for teams, and while everyone is calculating numbers and putting together spreadsheets showing the top-scoring teams, I’m keeping scoring potential in mind, but also always making room for someone who adds value in a different way. It’s not super often that teams need to replace higher scores with a more consistent low score, but two very recent examples include Biles being forced to withdraw from the team final in Tokyo and Blakely’s bars being considered too much of a risk at last year’s worlds, where Wong – who only competed on vault in qualifications – was able to come in and put up a steady score for the team. With only five athletes on a team and three scores needed for each event in the final, not having a trusted backup is a scary prospect.

Between classics, nationals, and trials, Wong hit 18 out of 18 routines. She also only won a single event medal, with her silver on vault at the U.S. Classic. So there’s a massive pro, but also a massive con, but is it really a con? Does everyone on every team really need to be an individual medal contender, or is there room for those who bring a different skillset to the mix, especially when the big scores are more or less covered by other athletes and the alternative would be another specialist with high-scoring potential but an inconsistent history? Not to mention that the top all-around athletes shouldn’t be required to compete all four events in the team final, and Wong is the best option to provide relief for Biles on bars and Jones on beam or floor, for example.

If Wong proved herself ready for a spot all summer, Roberson’s done it all season, going back to her fantastic performances on vault, beam, and floor at the Winter Cup in February to her multiple 14+ scores on floor in international competition – her 14.15 at the DTB Pokal Team Challenge, 14.1 and 14.067 at Pan Ams, and 14.066 at the Cairo World Cup are the top four international scores out of over a thousand international floor scores seen in the entirety of 2023 so far – to a domestic summer season that saw her win all-around bronze at the U.S. Classic before becoming the vault champion at nationals. In my eyes, she didn’t need to do much more at trials to show her readiness, but she did it anyway, finishing first on vault and second on floor.

While I was convinced, however, my concern was that the selection committee wouldn’t be, especially when the experienced Jordan Chiles made a strong case for herself on vault and bars despite looking a bit shaky elsewhere. Experience helps in situations like a world championships meet, and Chiles was a standout last fall, putting up four excellent scores to help the team win gold in the final before going on to win medals on vault and floor. Then there were a couple of other gymnasts with standout events, like Zoe Miller on bars and Kaliya Lincoln on vault, beam, and floor, both of whom put absolutely everything into Tuesday’s all-around competition with Lincoln’s score a career-best, as well as Jade Carey on vault, where the reigning world champion excelled, scoring a 14.8 for her Cheng on day two.

Roberson and Wong were my picks to round out the top all-arounders with both a specialist and the opposite of that, but I saw the value in selecting others as well, and felt like this team could have gone several different ways. But it seems the committee and I were on the same page for once, with Roberson and Wong joining the expected Biles, Jones, and Blakely trifecta, while Kayla DiCello – who kind of quietly slipped into seventh all-around here despite a fall on bars – was named the alternate.

DiCello was also picked to compete at the Pan Am Games, along with Chiles, Lincoln, Miller, and first-year senior Tiana Sumanasekera, who won this year’s Pan Am Championships all-around title back in May. Carey was also offered a Pan Ams spot, but turned it down due to a personal conflict and will instead compete at the Swiss Cup, while Alicia Zhou, Eveylynn Lowe, and Nola Matthews earned non-traveling alternate spots for Pan Ams, and Katelyn Jong previously earned an individual spot for Pan Ams by winning the Junior Pan Am Games title in 2021, though she was injured while training vault on Tuesday, so it’s unclear whether she’ll be able to compete or not.

I understand that Carey or Miller could have added more to the team’s scoring potential than some of those who were selected, and that there are very valid arguments for other combinations of athletes, but I love the strategy the selection committee ultimately went with, even if it was by coincidence if they ultimately just went with the all-around rank order from Tuesday’s competition. Either way, what stands out most about this team is that it wasn’t just the right team based on one night, but it was also the right team based on the months of tests that preceded the trial competition. This group of athletes is exactly who I would have selected after nationals, and the potential they have for success in Antwerp is nothing short of tremendous.

Article by Lauren Hopkins


By: Lauren
Title: Why the U.S. Worlds Team is Perfect and Exactly What We Wanted
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Published Date: Fri, 22 Sep 2023 04:57:49 +0000

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Kathryn Bernardo Puts Healthcare Workers at the Forefront in Seoul



Kathryn bagged the award for her role as medical nurse Ali in the series 2 Good 2 Be True, and dedicated her win to the real healthcare workers

Over the years, Asia’s Superstar Kathryn Bernardo has played a number of iconic roles that fans will always remember. In 2010, she won the hearts of many as the young Gretchen Barretto in Magkaribal, and in 2019, with a number of successful projects under her belt, she showed a new side of her acting prowess as Joy in Hello, Love, Goodbye. Before we all say hello to Philo, the actress closes the chapter of Nurse Ali from 2 Good 2 Be True by receiving an award at Seoul International Drama Awards.

RELATED: 5 Times Kathryn Bernardo Proved She’s a Fashion Chameleon

Kathryn Bernardo Seoul International Drama Awards 2 Good 2 Be True
Photo: STAR CINEMA (via Instagram)

Making meaningful success

Yesterday, the 27-year-old artist honored her well-beloved character in the series. In her speech, she emphasized the value of health workers, as well as awareness on Alzheimer’s Disease.

The actress said, “It’s always been more than just [sharing a] love story to our audience, but also spreading awareness about Alzheimer’s disease, and educating people about those who struggle with it, and how we can offer them the best support they need. This project made me appreciate our nurses and our healthcare workers so it was really more than just another TV show for me.”

During its air, 2 Good 2 Be True simultaneously premiered on Netflix and ABS-CBN’s other online and television platforms. In the show, Ali, played by Bernardo, took care of Ronaldo Valdez’s portrayal of Lolo Sir. In the series, he was experiencing the effects of Alzheimer’s disease.

Looking back on the role

The 130-episode run of the show was a success, with the audience applauding the team for the heavy research on medical procedures exhibited in the series. In one of the scenes, Kathryn conducted the F.A.S.T. method to confirm the stroke of Valdez’s role. Besides the factual portrayal of the procedure, viewers praised the actress’s expressive restraint playing Ali. According to some reviews, this was a factual portrayal of the health workers’ reality in their attachment to their patients.

Kathryn Bernardo Seoul International Drama Awards 2 Good 2 Be True
Photo: KATHRYN BERNARDO (via Instagram)

2 Good 2 Be True also starred the actress’ on and off screen partner, Daniel Padilla. The actor played Eloy, Lolo Sir’s estranged grandson and Ali’s love interest. Besides their established chemistry over the years, the love team’s relationship with Ronaldo Valdez’s character won the hearts of fans. In a tribute to the veteran actor, Bernardo referred to him as “the lolo I never had.”

Apart from her role as a persistent nurse, Ali was also well-beloved for being a determined dreamer and a hardworking family member. To some KathNiels, the comedic side of Alison Fajardo was also a throwback to Chichay. The latter was from the series Got 2 Believe.

On September 27, the actress will deliver a darker, more mature character as Philo in her newest film, A Very Good Girl.

Congratulations to Kathryn Bernardo for her well-deserved recognition at the Seoul International Drama Awards!

The post Kathryn Bernardo Puts Healthcare Workers at the Forefront in Seoul appeared first on MEGA.


By: Chlarine Gianan
Title: Kathryn Bernardo Puts Healthcare Workers at the Forefront in Seoul
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Published Date: Fri, 22 Sep 2023 10:17:15 +0000

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For Studios’ Bottom Lines, Awards Season May Be Stronger Than the Strikes




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The success of interim agreements — and the money left on the table not being able to give Oscar fare a proper campaign — could be enough to convince AMPTP members to finalize negotiations with the WGA and SAG.


Title: For Studios’ Bottom Lines, Awards Season May Be Stronger Than the Strikes
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Published Date: Thu, 21 Sep 2023 19:00:00 +0000

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