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SA gymnast still in limbo at World Games

Our one gymnast at the World Games in Cali, Colombia, Bianca Zoonekynd is getting itchy feet before her scheduled events, writes Mark Etheridge.

That’s because after repeated delays and hitches leading up to the tumbling and double mini-trampoline disciplines, the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) informed its member federations participating at the World Games 2013 Cali about unacceptable conditions at competition and training facilities.

FIG was concerned about the considerable risk that competitors in Trampoline, Tumbling, Acrobatic and Aerobic Gymnastics might face.

The Rhythmic Gymnastics competitions in Ribbon had to be cancelled on Thursday due to strong air draughts caused by the provisional air condition system.

Zooneykynd, who spearheaded Team SA at the opening ceremony on Thursday, is the only female athlete due to compete in both the tumbling and her more favoured double mini-trampoline. As of Saturday she has been unable to do any gymnastics-specific training, only doing gymwork.

The tented venue for gymnastics makes for stifling conditons but the FIG commission confirmed that the health of the Rhythmic gymnasts will not be at risk provided the temperature in the venues does not exceed 30 degrees.

In the case of Trampoline, Tumbling, Acrobatic and Aerobic Gymnastics the FIG as well as the IWGA can and will not allow any compromise. This was confirmed in writing by the IWGA, signed by their CEO and the President of their Medical Commission.

Cali Local Organising Committee (CLOC) was informed accordingly. Aerobic Gymnastics is a very intensive discipline and Trampoline, Tumbling and Acrobatic Gymnastics are disciplines which bear the risk of serious accidents. FIG and IWGA agreed not to allow trainings and competitions in these disciplines to start should the gymnasts be at risk. This includes that the temperature in the venues may not exceed 24 degrees as per the Technical Regulations of the FIG.

The FIG was due to inspect the warm-up and training tents for Trampoline, Tumbling and Acrobatic Gymnastics on Saturday and the competition venue will be inspected Sunday morning before further conditions.


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