Moscow 2010, Day 3: Spain renews with victory in Moscow

It was an expected victory for Spain in this fifth edition of the FINA Synchronised Swimming World Trophy taking place in the Russian capital, Moscow. The Iberians, winner of all team events, triumphed with a cumulative score of 389.375. Russia followed behind, having won “only” the duet, for an overall tally of 387.375 while Ukraine, third in team, duet and Combination, made a terrific World Trophy debut, completing the podium with an accumulated total of 381.000.  

As a result, the podium was exclusively European, with Canada finishing fourth overall, after a third place finish in the Synchro Highlight Routine on Day 1. The North Americans had won at home last year. Japan followed in fifth place while China, surprisingly, occupied the sixth position. It is a big disappointment for the Chinese, who placed fourth in 2009 and second in 2008. Closing the overall ranking, Egypt continues to better its marks, showing a clear progression since its first participation in 2006 also in Moscow.



The Spanish squad with their Trophy - credit: Giorgio Scala

Both Russia and Japan presented young squads, while Canada and Ukraine had a mix of experienced and junior synchro swimmers, eager to gain more international experience.


COMBINATION

In the final session of the World Trophy, all ten-strong teams performed in the Combination, the longest event of the competition. It is the only one to be performed under the same FINA Rules that apply in regular competitions. As a result, neither accessories nor additional equipment are permitted.

Spain reclaimed a spot at the top, totalling 98.125. The Spanish squad swam on Led Zeppelin’s “Stairways to Heaven”, presenting an improved version of their free routine from the last FINA World Championships in Rome. Collecting five 9.9 marks from the delighted judges, Spain’s margin of victory in the event assured them the overall win in the race for the World Trophy.

Spain’s national coach Anna Tarres commented on their success: “We’re really happy, it was our goal to present ourselves here with new and innovative ideas.” On her team’s performance in the Combination, she adds: “We were looking for something different and the team feels very comfortable swimming this way, they look mature, powerful and they can deal more easily with the choreography in the water.”

Runner-up Russia tallied 97.250 and continues to amaze with perfect synchronisation, artistic talent and a rare sense of elegance. The European squad assuredly remains a strong contender for the top positions.

The Ukrainians, who are definitely the positive discovery of this fifth edition, finished third with a very original programme, totalling 95.500 points. The athletes’ swimwear reminded us of ballerinas, gracefully evolving in the water while offering at the same time a fast and vibrant routine.



The ballerinas from Ukraine - credit: Giorgio Scala

Just out of medal range was Canada, with 95.250 points. The routine was marked by spectacular acrobatics, with the Canadians performing no less than eleven lifts and throws – four were executed one behind the other! The performance, as usual, was very energetic, with the swimmers moving quickly into the next sequence.

Asked about her team’s original lifts, Camille Bowness confides: “We’ve been training this routine for a while, most of the lifts in the Combination routine are actually made from Canada so we are really proud to demonstrate them to everyone.” Sharing her feeling on this edition, she says: “It’s exciting, especially with all the different props and accessories that you can use and it’s so much fun!”

Japan’s routine was marked by well-executed figures and a great sense of choreography associated with music while the Chinese remarkable performance failed to convince the judges.


Team from China - credit: Giorgio Scala


The Africans, who have participated in the World Trophy since its inaugural edition, have made terrific progress since their first time in Moscow. Nice lifts, much leg work and graceful movements close to music proved that the Egyptian squad is becoming more confident in the water.

Team members May Mohamed, Shaza Yehia and Dalia al Gebali share their thoughts on this edition: “We feel much better than in the previous editions, we feel the performance is improving. It makes us really happy that we were able to improve our scores, it’s a great step for us and it’s encouraging.”


Egyptian elegance - credit: Giorgio Scala

The fifth edition of the FINA Synchronised Swimming World Trophy drew to a close with the Award Ceremony and a magnificent synchronised swimming gala organised by the Russian Synchronised Swimming Federation.

Combination teams:

CANADA: Marie-Lou Morin, Camille Bowness, Geneviève Bélanger, Stéphanie Durocher, Emilia Kopcik, Sandy Gill, Gabrielle Cardinal, Lisa Mikelberg, Rachel Kowalski, Marie Rondeau

CHINA: Ming Zhu Li, Xin Li, Si Jia Lv, Wen Qian Ma, Xue Mei, Ni Zi Wang, Jing Yi Wu, Ying Ying Xiang, Rui Shu Xie, Zhen Zeng

EGYPT: Dalia al Gebali, Shaza Yehia, May Mohamed, Aziza Mahmoud, Youmna Amr, Mariam Yehia, Nour al Afandi, Lamia Mohsen, Yousra Magdi, Radwa Mostafa

JAPAN: Risako Mitsui, Yuma Kawai, Kei Marumo, Haruna Onishi, Chisato Haga, Chihiro Matsumoto, Sae Ishiyama, Arisa Ichikawa, Natsumi Miyazaki, Fumiyo Kashima

RUSSIA: Vlada Chigireva, Anna Esavkina, Meri Minasyan, Yulia Potapova, Ksenia Voynova, Anna Kuteynikova, Maria Shurochkina, Vasilisa Mironova, Elena Prokofeva, Milena Miteva, Evgenia Shtefan

SPAIN: Andrea Fuentes, Ona Carbonell, Thais Henriquez, Alba Cabello, Paula Klamburg, Margalida Crespi, Clara Basiana, Cristina Salvador, Irene Montrucchio, Judit Requena, Laia Pons  

UKRAINE: Daria Iushko, Kseniya Sydorenko, Anna Voloshyna, Kateryna Sadurska, Oleksandra Sabada, Olga Kondrashova, Olena Grechykhina, Lolita Ananasova, Yuliya Maryanko, Ganna Khmelnytska