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Romania is off to a good start on floor with Suciuís routine. Potra is spectacular and solid. Dragulescu stumbles on his double layout in his first tumbling run and has problems on his double double. 26,911.
The Ukrainians struggle to land their vaults. Only 27,674.
(Kasperovich on the photo, right>)
Yohan Mounard (FRA) gives the fans something to cheer about with a great routine on bars. Florent Maree is less clean in his moves, but his routine has more difficutly. Bars specialist Yann Cucherat keeps cool, France earns more points: 27,775 points.

Korea seems a little demotivated on high bar, a fact refelected in their scores.: 26,962.

McClure (USA) is great on bars. Bhavsar is a little less precise. Towsend is fantastic. 27,849 in the end for the USA.

Fully aware of their weakness on high bar the Chinese leave out some of their more difficult elements. Their strategy pays off  with no falls and more point than could have been expected: 27,362.

Grebenkov (RUS) begins well on floor, but Bondarenko falls on his first tumble. Nemov steps out of bounds on a double front but is clean a whistle otherwise. 26,999 for Russia.

Kruzhylov starts on vault for Belarus with a solid double twisting Tsukahara. Sakarovich nails a great handspring-double front. Sinkevich ends with a double twisting Tsukahara. 28,061 points.

 Rotation 5:

Roman Zozulia (UKR)  is spectacular on bars if not flawless. The same applies to Mikhailichenko. Lipski finally scores well. Ukraine totals 27,412.

Dan Potra (ROM) has the audience cheering for him on pommels. But then Suciu falls. Urzicaís routine is a dream. Romania earns 28,311 points.  

... on floor, the Koreans stumble to 25,6 points.

Deng Weiwei (CHN) goes for stability on floor. Feng Jing doesnít have more up his sleeve either. Only Li Rongjie is a bit more impressive. 27,187 for China.

Brett McClure (USA) gets off the a flying start on high bar with 9,612. Towsend releases five times and catches the bar safely every time. Perfect. The audience cheers frantically. Paul Hamm tops its off with the highest score so far Ė 9,737. 28,861 in all!  

France is hoping for a medal. Cedric Guille is flawless on high bar. Cucherat falls. Maree collapses on a handstand. Only 27,574.  

<< Florent Maree (FRA)

Georgi Grebenkov (RUS) is disappointing yet again on pommels. Yuri Tikhanovski falls. Nikolai Kryukov is magic here keeping the damage down for Russia. 25,312.

Belarus starts well on bars with Kasperovich.  Ivankov gets through his routine well. 
Sinkevich is great: 28,762.
Belarus now leads the USA and France by over a point.

 Rotation 6:

Roman Zozulia is very messy on high bar. Lipski is better. Beresh is clean and spectacular- world class! 28,474.
Selariu visibly fight against the rings. Dragulescu manages his strength elements well. Potra is fantastic 27,624.
A weak routine from Yohan Mounard on floor might have cost France a medal. Cedric Guille seems nervous too and not as dynamic as usual. Florent Maree goes out of bounds on his first pass but remains flawless after that. 26,974 in total. Enough?
The young Chinese team is on pommel horse which they like. Feng Jing starts off with 9,362. Li Rongjie is alweays very prescise. Xao Qinís routine is a dream scoring 9,8. Stiil, only 27,374 for the Chinese.
McCain has nerves of steel. He makes it through his difficult floor rotuine without any problems. But Towsend sits down his double front mount. Everything goes smoothly after that and Paul Hamm anchors the USA for a medal. But will it be silver or gold?
This will be decided by Belarus on high bar. Kruzhylovís routine is anything but solid but he still receives a high score. Dzenis Savenkov is better and Ivan Ivankov wins it all for his team with a great rotuine.  
Bondarenko finishes with a reasonable routine on rings. Grebenkov isnít in the same league.

Yevgeni Krylov does his best. Russia finishes a disappointing seventh.

Belarus wins deservedly by over three points Ivankovís people were flawless and presented routines of high difficulty.Ivankov with the very last routine on high bar of the competition:

Belorussia wins the gold medal in team competition to the first time in history!

The Americans didnít shy away from risk either whereas the Ukrainians sneaked onto the medal podium almost unnoticed not risking very much.
France can celebrate a success with fourth place and strong team showing. The young Chinese team proved that the future is theirs. Romania and Russia were disappointing. Korea was out of it from the beginning when one of their gymnasts couldnít finish his routine.

The level of gymnastics was very high. 
The new competition programme devised by the FIG passed its test.  (Nora Schuler / Reinhard Linder)

>> Back to qualification groups:

Report by Reinhard Linder / Nora Schuler
Web editors: Eckhard Herholz / Sonja Schmeisser
Photos by Don Johnson

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