And Confidence Returned

Sovetskii Sport

July 28, 1979  If you approach Rastorotsky when Natasha is leaving the podium, you will notice his stern glance.  He doesn't want to divert the psychological state of his pupil for one second.  For him, the past three years have been a puzzling riddle because his Natashka, who performs her hazardous program perfectly in training, can suddenly and unexpectedly stumble all over the place in big tournaments.  But during this time she has still had some big results -- twice USSR Cup winner, world championships overall bronze medalist, and winner of the Spartakiade for schoolchildren.  And finally, at our country's championship, Natasha at last broke her string of bad performances.

Rastorotsky persuaded Shaposhnikova that she was more talented than thousands of other gymnasts. Of course, each coach always idealizes his pupils.  But Rastorotsky instincts weren't exaggerated: not with Ludmila Turishcheva, nor with Shaposhnikova, nor with Natalia Yurchenko. 

Why are we able to praise Natasha today, even though in May at the European championship she deserved reproach for her mistakes and instability?  We can affirm that this time Shaposhnikova, who turned 18 years old on June 24, demonstrated new qualities.  Rastorotsky says that Natasha has finally come forward in the manner of Turishcheva, who is her idol.

Finally, certainty arrived in the performances of this Rostov school girl.  She showed such a shining program, with such virtuous technique and such a smooth manner, and her balletic movements combined with striking sharpness.

Natasha won!  She beat her own timidness.

Nelli Kim received a score of 9.7 for her uneven bars exercise.  We can say without exaggeration that Nelli was the audience favorite.  In her performances were risk, vivacity, passion, and charm.  The public supported her, and Nelli tried to please them and strived to shine.

Oh, how guilty she looked on the podium when she fell from beam - 9.25.  Because of this weak score, second place was taken by Tatiana Arzhannikova.

We are earnestly following the Olympic journey of Tanya.  She is our young world champion in the team competition.  And Vikenty Dmitriev, the great producer of distinguished gymnasts Larissa Petrik and Tamara Lazakovich, has developed a complicated and modern program for his 14-year-old pupil.  She fell from beam (9.1).  This, of course, lessened Arzhannikova's final result but her silver medal made an impression.

Foreign competitors did not win any [all-around] prizes in the tournament.  Even Vera Cerna from Czechoslovakia, quick and small, with a reputation on the international stage, was only 16th in our country's championship.  Still, the specialists noticed Katharina Rensch of the GDR, Anita Jokiel and Malgorzata Majza of Poland, and Eva Mareckova of Czechoslovakia.

The European and foreign competitors are swiftly matching the achievements of the world leaders of gymnastics; their current exercises are complex and are nearly polished for the upcoming Olympic Games.

Technical results
VII Summer Spartakiade of the People of the USSR.  Gymnastics.  Moscow.  Lenin Sports Palace.  July 26.
Women, all-around final: 1. N. Shaposhnikova (RSFSR) - 77.425 (9.85, 9.65, 9.7, 9.4); 2. T. Arzhannikova (Belorussia) - 76.475 (9.55, 9.55, 9.1, 9.8); 3. N. Kim (Belorussia) - 76.425 (9.9, 9.7, 9.25, 9.0); 4. E. Mareckova (CSSR) - 76.10; 5. V. Verna (CSSR) - 75.55; 6. E. Csanyi (Hungary) - 75.45; 7. K. Ujeszgeti (Hungary) - 75.225; 8. K. Rensch (GDR) - 74.90; 9. M. Goermann (Canada) - 74.70; 10. A. Jokiel (Poland) - 74.325.

USSR Championships:  1. N. Shaposhnikova (RSFSR) - 77.425; 2. M. Filatova (RSFSR) - 77.075; 3. N. Tereshchenko (Moscow) - 76.725; 4. T. Arzhannikova (Belorussia) - 76.475; 5-6. N. Kim (Belorussia) and V. Zhidunova (Belorussia) - 76.425; 7. E. Naimushina (RSFSR) - 76.375; 8. E. Davydova (Leningrad) - 76.35; 9. E. Polevaya (Belorussia) - 76.325; 10. S. Zakharova (Belorussia) - 76.25.

This page was created on February 17, 2006.
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