--- According to Sina, Yang Wei may become a specialist rather than an all-arounder. The 2008 Olympic all-around champion, who only just resumed systematic training after a long break and a high-profile wedding, says he does want to take part in this year's National Games (a big sporting event in China), but "not necessarily in the all-around." "I first want to resume regular training. I haven't made up my mind yet about what I'll do later, but I definitely want to represent Hubei Province at the National Games," said Yang. "Last time, the Hubei men's team placed sixth. I hope we can do better this year."
Yang Wei in Beijing (photo: Alexander Hassenstein/Bongarts)
--- In Holland a few more unflattering articles have been published on the goings-on in the national women's gymnastics team. The country's largest newspaper, Telegraaf, just devoted a couple of articles (here and here) to perceived wrongs in the Dutch gymnastics world, quoting former national team members Petra Witjes and Berber van den Berg, as well as current national team member Loes Linders' mother. We're not going to post the articles here as we're too busy to translate them and they don't go beyond the usual arguments against women's gymnastics (i.e. it exploits children who suffer verbal abuse at the hands of their ambitious and frequently socially inept coaches and don't dare contradict those coaches for fear of losing their place on the team), but it is more bad press for Dutch gymnastics, which once upon a time seemed so promising...
Sanne Wevers, Dutch female gymnast of the year
(photo: Iris van den Broek/Gymnasticsphotography)
--- On a more positive note, the same newspaper, Telegraaf, reports that the Dutch Gymnastics Federation has named Sanne Wevers and Epke Zonderland as its top athletes of the year 2008. Zonderland made the Olympic high bar final and won the event at the World Cup Final; Wevers won both bars and beam at the Glasgow Grand Prix and made the World Cup Final on beam, from which she had to scratch due to an elbow injury. Holland's bronze-medal-winning team at the Junior European Championships received a special "young talent award."