Thursday, 29 September 2011

The Tweddle II: this time its personal

Having spent the last fortnight on a sun lounger drinking rose and burning to a crisp, I returned to the UK this morning with a hangover, a fantastic tan and severe gymnastics withdrawal symptoms. Although the former lingers on, the latter has been thoroughly quenched by a good few hours of forum and youtube scouring. And what a find this was.......

I love Beth Tweddle, as is probably painfully transparent to any readers of this blog. I think she is a fantastic gymnast (not without fault, though, but I like that in an athlete). One thing that is impossible to fault her on, though, is her fighting spirit. Her drive and determination and clear commitment to the sport. These qualities clearly drive her and her coach to keep pushing Beth’s routines, and the results can be genuinely breathtaking.
When I first saw her perform the Tweddle I was literally gobsmacked. When I first saw it I couldn’t even understand the mechanics of what she was doing. The way she drop so quickly into that half twist regrasp is just brilliant and would be enough alone, but then comes the immediate Ezhova to crown her as the queen of release combinations. It was really, for me, a standout moment in modern gymnastics: seeing not only a British gymnast, but an “older” one, performing at the forefront of ingenuity and execution in the sport.
...and it now seems she is doing it again. This video, which clearly popped up around a week ago, shows Beth performing what appears to be an Arabian full out. My jaw dropped again. If she can make this competition ready by Tokyo it would surely be one of the skills of the championships (for me, anyway). Imagine the combinations.....could she manage a 1.5 twist leading into this? Or if not then do a 1.5 into the Dos Santos? Any of the options are super exciting, and I cannot wait to see if she pulls it out.
First the Sacramone and now the Tweddle II. I am gonna have to keep my fingers permanently crossed for the next few weeks...

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