Marcel Nguyen won with 87.600 points over Philipp Boy (87.000) and Eugen Spiridonov (84.100) at the first German trials for the Worlds in October. Fabian Hambüchen competed only four events and got the top score on high bar (16.25).
Once again, Philipp Boy, the European Champion, showed some nerves, had some problems on pommel horse, an “eye-problem” on high bar and counted altogether three falls (dismount on rings, Dragulescu on vault – I never thought, Boy would try a Draguelscu as he almost always landed his Roche in warm-up and also sometimes in competition on the butt -, dismount on parallel bars). He started strong on floor with 15.25 and finished good on high bar with 15.40, but lost some points in between. Boy is an excellent gymnast but he’s been very inconsistent and somehow it’s a miracle to me how he kept it together at Worlds and this years Europeans. If everything will go as planned – and he still has the German Championships – he’ll score over 90.00 and is definitely capable to win another AA medal at Worlds.
In my opinion, Marcel Nguyen worked and still works extremely hard to prove himself every time he competes. Currently, everyone thinks of him as the number three behind Hambüchen and Boy, but this guy who won German Championships last year, got injured right before Worlds and came back extremely strong at Europeans, is also very capable to win a medal at Worlds and more importantly place higher than Boy at an important international meet. His competition today wasn’t perfect, he had several small problems on floor, parallel bars, where he couldn’t show the tsukahara dismount, and high bar. He still got the highest scores on parallel bars and vault.
Fabian Hambüchen‘s destiny for the next Olympic Games will be pommel horse. He has been fantastic and very consistent on high bar, good on parallel bars (lost a few tenth on the dismount), rings was okay but pommel horse not. No fall but 13.000 are way to low for the team as well as his all-around score. And what concerns me more is that the past months he didn’t train floor or vault, but focused on only four events, so if there had been a good chance to improve on pommel horse, it’s gone. Hopefully he’ll prove me wrong and improve his difficulty and execution in the next weeks and more importantly over the next months. But still: It’s great to have him back – he rocks the high bar!
Eugen Spiridonov, Thomas Taranu, the very young Ivan Rittschik (1992) and Sebastian Krimmer placed third to sixth with scores between 84.100 and 82.550.
Sebastian Krimmer had a standout performance on pommel horse with 15.15 points but also some problems on rings, parallel bars (fall) and floor (fall). Plus he has a very easy vault: a Yurchenko full. The question for him will be: Is pommel horse enough to get me on the team? Or do I and can I work harder on the other apparatus? It might be enough for Worlds but certainly not enough for the Olympics where only five and not six gymnasts will be on the team.
Thomas Taranu is in a similar situation. He’s excellent on rings where he got the highest score (15.00) but has problems to convince on the other apparatus. His vault is better than Krimmer’s, a tsukahara double back, but he fell on this one. All he has to do is to show clean and consistent gymnastics on the other apparatus and increase the d-score here and there a little bit so that it’s enough for qualifications. This might bring him on the Worlds team.
Eugen Spiridonov, the veteran, who turns 30 next year, and the young talent Ivan Rittschik both had a pretty good competition. Spiridonov also fell twice but managed to show another Kolman on high bar after he fell on this element. The second fall was on his new tsukahara on floor. Spiridonov proved for many years that he’s a reliable team member. Rittschik – a dark horse for me – will be one to watch for the next years, but he might be too young and unexperienced to make the Worlds team.
So far so good. I guess we will all know a lot more after the German Championships in two weeks, especially whether Matthias Fahrig is going to compete floor and vault.