By John Tuerijama
JUNIOR gymnasts did exceptionally well at the just-concluded Region 5 Gymnastics Competition held in Harare, Zimbabwe.
Team manager, Petra Thorburn told Confidente on enquiry that the national side competed in the senior trampoline, junior trampoline for boys and rhythmic gymnastics.
Thornburn said she is extremely happy with the overall performances of the gymnasts, adding that the pre-junior team still needs to do a bit of work on their finishing.
“This is a great competition to learn the trade. I can’t really exclude one specific gymnast but the teams who caught my eyes were the boys’ artistic team, the senior artistic girls’ team, including the junior and senior girls,” said Thornburn.
“The trampoline teams as well as the rhythmic team did very well, however, all our gymnasts contributed to a very balanced and standardised competition,” she said.
Asked how important the Region 5 competition is Thornburn said: “Region 5 is one of our big highlights of the year because this is a development competition. It is important for the Namibia Gymnastics Federation to compete in this competition to enable us to keep up with the ever-growing standard of gymnastics which also enables our gymnasts to form part of the annual NSC Sport Awards.”
Looking at 2017, the Namibia Gymnastic Federation will host the Top 6 Tournament whereby the best six gymnasts in each division compete against each other. Namibia will also try to host an international invitational competition, Thornburn said.
She said Namibia is currently preparing for the 2018 Youth Olympic Games as well as the Indoor Pacific for Trampoline in 2020.
“I believe artistic gymnastics can improve more but also in saying that gymnastics as a whole is very time consuming and needs a lot of dedication. There is a very fine line in pushing gymnasts for extra time without killing the love for the sport. We are currently busy with a five-year plan to improve our standard,” revealed Thornburn.
Following are the results:
Overall gold team medal and individual medals for:
Riaan Jantjies- 2nd on floor and high bar, 3rd on rings and 1st on vault as well as overall second place
Arno Brink – 2nd on pommel horse
Delano Muller – 2nd on vault and 3rd on pommel
Artistic Girls: Pre-Junior Team
Overall 3rd place in team medal
Artistic Girls: Junior Team
Overall 2nd place in team medal
Artistic Girls: Senior team
Overall 2nd place in team medal as well as individual medals
Meike Mackensen- 3rd on bars and floor
Michelle Starke- 3rd on beam
Elsjen Wilders- 3rd on vault
Mini Trampoline Girls- Bronze
Mini Trampoline Boys- Silver
Charlize van Zyl- gold for double mini and trampoline
Junior Trampoline – Girls:
Team gold for double mini as well as trampoline as well as individual medals for trampoline and double mini,
Carane van Zyl and Meagan le Roux, and first and second place.
Junior Trampoline Boys:
Leon van Wyk- bronze for trampoline and double mini
Level 4,6 and 8 took second place in the team competition as well as Carla Schutz level 8 who took a third place for hoop.
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