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2013 Romanian Nationals: Women’s competition

The 2013 Romanian National Championship was one of the most exciting internal competitions of the past years. The podium acquired last year finally allowed Romania to host a top level internal competition. Adding to the excitement was the presence of our top seniors, Larisa Iordache and Sandra Izbașa, alongside some of our best junior gymnasts. For many of the latter, this was their first podium competition and a chance to perform alongside two of the best gymnasts in the world (Romania had only 4 senior gymnasts present at this meet so juniors and seniors competed together). Sadly, Diana Bulimar´s injury was announced here as well: she underwent knee surgery before this competition and will miss the chance to compete at the upcoming World Championships. This puts an end to a very good season for Diana, who had medaled at the European Championships and every other competition she attended.

Team competition

Winner: CNS Cetate Deva 1

From left to right: Laura Jurca, Andreea Iridon, Andreea Munteanu and Ștefania Stănilă

This year´s Cetate Deva´s first team (they had two at the competition) put together two 2013 EYOF medalists and two 2012 Junior Europeans medalists to overscore Larisa´s Dinamo and Sandra´s Steaua/CSS2, all Bucharest clubs. It was the first time this year we were seeing Ștefania Stănilă compete (now in her first senior year) and she hasn’t managed to improve too much, placing behind juniors such as Iridon, Ciurușniuc or Munteanu. The latter was coming back from injury but led her team to victory nonetheless. All four Deva gymnasts, who train at Izvorani, placed in the top 6 of the All-around.

All-around

Winner: Larisa Iordache

Must watch: Andreea Munteanu

Knowing she is still troubled by her back problems, we did not really know what to expect from Larisa at this competition. She not only did all four events, but showed a new floor and an improved bars routine. She also looked confident in her layout full on beam during warm-up although she did not perform it in competition. Her fighting spirit is always a highlight when you watch her perform live; you can see how much this gymnast just loves this sport. Breathing down her neck was Andreea Munteanu, who came really close on three events. Both her and third place Iridon have those qualities Romania really needs right now: strength, talent and elegance.

Event Finals: Vault

Winner: Laura Jurca / Ana Maria Ocolișan

Event Finals: Beam

Winner: Larisa Iordache

Must watch: Andreea Munteanu

No doubt Larisa is one of the best beam workers in the world right now, but give Andreea one more – hopefully injury free – year and she will probably be right there with her, fighting for a World medal on this apparatus. The take away from this beam final is that Romania still has a lot of very good beam workers, which made this final very interesting to watch.

Event Finals: Uneven bars

Winner: Larisa Iordache

Must watch: Andreea Ciurușniuc

Although she fell both days on this event, Larisa doesn’t want to give up her All-around chances and is clearly working hard to improve on this apparatus. A junior gymnast with a lot of potential is Andreea Ciurușniuc who is making a lot of progress lately. She has two release skills on this event already, which is a lot for a 13 year old Romanian Junior.

Event Finals: Floor

Winner: Sandra Izbașa

Must watch: Andra Stoica

The lovely Sandra graced us with her presence in what will probably be the last internal competition of her career. I don’t even think anyone cared what she threw, we just laid back and enjoyed her performance. Twice! Andra Stoica was another great floor performer, there is something about her that just makes you want to keep watching, even when she is just warming up. The 2000 generation, which also includes Andra, was really well represented at this event (with gymnasts such as Ciurușniuc and Butuc making the podiums on bars and beam, respectively).

Find the complete results from this competition here.

This post is also available in: Romanian