Morgan Hurd

Play-by-Play: 2019 Tokyo World Cup, Women's All-around Final

Morgan Hurd of the USA.

Morgan Hurd of the USA.

Rotation 1:

Morgan Hurd (USA) VT: Good DTY, hint of legs in the air, drifts off to the right. Wow -- she was really off on the takeoff of that, but saves it with just a fairly big step to the side. 14.233 with 0.1 for going over the line.

Aiko Sugihara, JPN, VT: Really nice Yurchenko 1.5, small hop. Gorgeous in the air, and just floated all the way through. Hi there Aiko! 14.1.

Asuka Teramoto, JPN, VT: Terrific handspring Rudi, very nearly stuck. Asuka comes off the podium with a smile, and with good reason: she's done this vault for years and received very little acclaim for it. That was the best one ever, though! 14.6. Wow.

Lee Yunseo (KOR), VT: Yurchenko full, some legs and a small hop. Better and higher than we saw at the American Cup last month, in any case. 13.166.

Ellie Black (CAN), VT: WOW. STUCK handspring layout front full. A tad piked in the air as always, but whatever — that was gorgeous. Everyone's having the best day of their lives on vault at the Tokyo World Cup. Maybe there's something in the water. Maybe it's the equipment. 14.500.

Liu Jingxing (CHN), VT: Tidy FTY with a couple of tiny steps back. 13.1.

Carina Kroll (GER), VT: Handspring front tuck half, a little low on the landing and maybe just a smidge underrotated, but stuck all the same. Can't remember the last time so many have stuck or nearly stuck their vaults! 13.033.

Carolyne Pedro (BRA), VT: Very good FTY, small hop on the landing but nothing much else to take away from it. 13.5.

Ksenia Klimenko (RUS), VT: Yurchenko layout with a small step back. Wise choice to do the simpler vault after landing the full on her hands and knees in warmup. 12.1.

After one: It's Asuka Teramoto, then Ellie Black, then Morgan Hurd after a marvelous vault rotation at the Tokyo World Cup. Hurd may not have gotten the start she wanted, but she's capable of making up the difference. Her competition is looking good, however.

Rotation 2:

Aiko Sugihara (JPN), UB: 12.866 for clean routine with full twisting double tuck dismount. Short on a couple handstands, though.

Asuka Termaoto (JPN), UB: Inbar blind to pike Jaeger, Nice Ricna. Stalder full to Gienger. Blind to pike Jaeger. Bail to Ray. Great high full twisting double tuck, small hop on the landing. Cool new routine for her. 13.266.

Lee Yunseo (KOR), UB: Inbar full. Inbar Shaposh to Pak to stalder, misses feet on toe on into her stalder, has to stop and opts to jump off an rechalk. The rest was clean. 12.133.

Ellie Black (CAN), UB: Toe Shaposh to clear hip uprise Tkatchev. Toe Tkatchev, hop change to pike Jaeger. Pak. toe shoot Shaposh half to high. Full turn. Toe on front half tuck dismount, stuck. 13.533.

Liu Jingxing (CHN), UB: Huge toe Tkatchev but falls on it, just cast too far out. Would have been amazing. Pak. Maloney to inbar Gienger. Blind to full spin to Jaeger. Beautiful double layout, stuck. Highly impressive routine despite the fall. 12.333.

Carina Kroll (GER), UB: Stalder to toe full, finished out of handstand, Maloney to Pak, nice. Ray, labored handstand before blind to Jaeger. Toe half. Same dismount as black -- toe on front half tucked, misses and lands on her hands and knees. 10.766.

Carolyne Pedro (BRA), UB: Shaposh to Pak. Toe full to Maloney to bail to Ray. Blind to Jaeger. Toe stalder half turn (finishes out of handstand), giants to double tuck. Very clean in the interior, underwhelming dismount. 12.566.

Ksenia Klimenko (RUS), UB: Off on opening stalder full. Uh-oh. Repeats the skill to toe Shaposh half. Toe blind on high -- has to improvise -- to pike Jaeger to Pak. Maloney to inbar Geinger. Blind to double front half out, underrotated and crashed. Poor kid is in tears as she walks off the podium. 10.966.

Morgan Hurd (USA), UB: Inbar Shaposh to uprise stalder full to Tkatchev. Ricna to Pak. Ray. Inbar blind. Inbar to full twisting double tuck, hangs on for the stick. Really correct handstands in that routine. Score in the blog. 14.300.

After two: Ellie Black and Asuka Teramoto both remain in striking distance of Morgan Hurd entering the third rotation. Black is 0.5 back, while Teramoto trails by 0.667. Afterward things open up -- Sugihara, currently fourth, is more than 1.5 points behind Hurd.

Rotation 3:

Asuka Teramoto (JPN), BB: Front aerial, split jump, straddle jump. Double turn. Onodi. Switch to side somie. Bhs, layout. Side aerial. 2.5 twist dismount, tiny hop. Solid as ever on beam. 13.333.

Lee Yunseo (KOR), BB: Back dive mount. Double wolf turn. Split leap to switch half. Front aerial, jump. Side aerial. Side somie. Bhs, layout, balance check. Switch to split jump full, not 180. 2.5 twist, slightly underrotated. Best routine from her so far. 11.933.

Ellie Black (CAN), BB: Switch leap mount. Double turn. Solid punch front. Bhs, layout to two feet, so aggressive! Really giving nothing away. Switch to switch half to bhs. Side somie. 2.5 twist, small hop forward. Terrific set. 13.733.

Liu Jingxing (CHN), BB: Back dive mount. Roundoff, layout to two feet, wobbles, no connection to jumps. Switch ring to bhs, lovely. Front aerial to split jump to back tuck. Split half. Big wobble on jump near the end. Nice double tuck dismount. 13.6.

Carina Kroll (GER), BB: Roundoff, bhs mount (falls). Bhs, layout, nice. Split leap to split half, wobble. Illusion turn, very nice. Side aerial. Side somie. Switch to split jump. Bhs, 1.5 dismount. 11.4.

Carolyne Pedro (BRA), BB: Split leap mount. Switch to Tourjete. Split half. Bhs, layout, small adjustment. Punch front, another small wobble but nothing serious. Front aerial to split to bhs. Back tuck. Double tuck with a tiny hop back. Huge improvement from Stuttgart! 12.233.

Ksenia Klimenko (RUS), BB: Switch, scissone, wolf. Side aerial, layout stepout, pretty. Side somie. Front aerial to ring jump. Front handspring to front tuck, too forward, grabs beam, makes it look like choreo (judges won't be fooled though). Overtime. Front 1/1 dismount. 12.633.

Morgan Hurd (USA), BB: Wobble on standing full. Side aerial, check. New standing layout, layout combo, great. Front aerial, pause, ring jump, wobble. Tiny wobble before split half. Save of the year so far on switch ring. Double pike, shuffle back. Overtime, I think? 12.933 gives the lead back to Black.

Aiko Sugihara (JPN), BB: Wolf turn double. Side aerial, wobble. Bhs, layout. Front aerial to ring jump, wobble. Very nice switch ring. Double pike with step/shuffle back. She looks thrilled to have that one done. Lots of elegance to this routine, but her own move, the double turn with leg at head, is absent. 13.0.

After three: Fantastic beam routine moves Ellie Black ahead of Morgan Hurd with just one routine left to perform. Hurd will need to be 0.3 better than Black on floor to win the meet. Teramoto's only 0.567 off the lead as well.

Rotation 4:

Carina Kroll (GER), FX: 1.5 to front layout/tuck full. Wonderful double turn with leg at head to illusion turn. Tourjete 1/1. Double tuck, steps back and out of bounds. Double full, two small steps back. Switch to switch half. Well performed. 12.533.

Ksenia Klimenko (RUS), FX: 2.5 to punch front, tidy, teeny hop forward. Double tuck, hop back. Double turn with leg at head. Switch half. 1.5 to front full. Double wolf turn (sigh). 12.833.

Lee Yunseo (KOR): Double turn with leg at head. Double pike. Triple twist. Nice presentation. Double wolf turn. 1.5 to front layout 1/1. Double tuck, a bit low to end. And a Wenson finish, something seen more in Aerobic gymnastics — google it. 12.266.

Carolyne Pedro (BRA), FX: Arabian double front mount, well done. Double turn with leg at head, not quite finished. Switch ring. 1.5 to double tuck. Switch 1/2. Ends with double pike. 12.833. So she gets her 51! 51.132 overall score.

Liu Jingxing (CHN), FX: Fast music. Full in tuck, small step back. Double tuck. Double turn with leg at head. Punch front to double full, bounces out of it, loses her footing and has to put her hands down. Oops. Double pike, underrotated and Melnikovas it. 11.5.

Aiko Sugihara (JPN), FX: New routine for her. Double layout, didn’t get the punch she needed, underrotates and falls. Too bad — her day was going so well! Floaty 2.5 to front layout though. Double turn with leg at head. Double turn with leg up. Double tuck. Switch ring to switch. Lovely expression in the choreo as well. 12.0.

Asuka Teramoto (JPN), FX: Double turn with leg at horizontal. Two whips to 3/1, stuck. Asuka's come to play! 1.5 to 2.5. Front 2/1. Switch ring to switch 1/1. Excellent double pike. Great finish! 13.6.

Morgan Hurd (USA), FX: New routine! Double double tuck, a tad underrotated, steps forward. Double layout, stuck. Switch ring. Switch 1/1. Loving the beauty in this set! Front layout to front 1/1. Double pike, small bounce back. Hurd's capable of a little better on floor, but for someone who had elbow surgery in December, that was still pretty darn good. The tumbling's quite good, but the artistry, expression and musical interpretation were next level. 13.6.

Ellie Black (CAN), FX: Popa. 2.5 walkout to double tuck. Front layout 1/1 walkout to double tuck, tries to stick, has to step back and out of bounds. That may do it for her. Double full, sticks that. Like Hurd, excellent choice of music. She doesn’t do a routine — she gives a performance. But was it better than 13.3? No — 13.266 will be good for silver, however!

Results:

GOLD - Morgan Hurd, USA, 55.099
SILVER - Ellie Black, CAN, 55.032
BRONZE - Asuka Teramoto, JPN, 54.799
4. Aiko Sugihara, JPN, 51.966
5. Carolyne Pedro, BRA, 51.132
6. Liu Jingxing, CHN, 50.533
7. Lee Yunseo, KOR, 49.498
8. Ksenia Klimenko, RUS, 48.732
9. Carina Kroell, GER, 47.732

2019 Tokyo World Cup Preview - Women

The Americans captured the American Cup, Simone Biles steamrolled the competition in Stuttgart, and Aliya Mustafina conquered England via Birmingham. But Tokyo -- who’s going to take it all in Tokyo?

The 2020 Olympic city is hosting the fourth and final FIG All-around World Cup event of the year this weekend, and while the lineups have been shuffled like a deck of cards almost since the day they were announced, the final competitors list makes the podiums no less difficult to predict. All the same, here’s a modest auguring about who’s going to land in the top five in the women’s competition, with a bit of context as to why.

Morgan Hurd of the USA.

Morgan Hurd of the USA.

GOLD - Morgan Hurd, USA. The 2017 world all-around champion and 2018 world bronze medalist has proven time and again that not only does she do extremely difficult gymnastics, she can hit her routines when it really matters. Despite a December elbow surgery, Hurd is ready for this competition or she would not have been tapped for the assignment. She may not throw some of her most difficult tumbling in Tokyo, but if everything goes moderately well, she shouldn’t need to either.

SILVER - Ellie Black, Canada. Expect the unexpected from Ellie Black: whether it’s breaking into the medals at the American Cup after hurting her knee in podium training or becoming the comedic heart and soul of the Superstars of Gymnastics show in London, the 2017 world all-around silver medalist is full of surprises. Black struggled mightily on uneven bars early in her elite career but has transformed it into her potentially highest scoring event, which says something about her ability to improve and adapt. Going four for four in Tokyo will see her in good stead for another podium.

BRONZE - Asuka Teramoto, Japan. One of the world’s undersung gymnasts for the past six years, tiny Teramoto has everything it takes to make onto the podium in Tokyo, including a good Rudi vault. Already a veteran of two Olympic teams, the quiet 23-year-old rock of Team Nippon will be taking advantage of the Tokyo World Cup to try out new routines, which might lead to problems or re-announce her as one of Japan’s preeminent gymnasts. Here’s betting it’ll be the latter.

4. Aiko Sugihara, Japan. Japan’s pirouetting sensation, a member of the 2016 Olympic squad, is a very well balanced gymnast with pretty presentation and plenty of difficulty. After a foot injury kept Sugihara from performing at last year’s world chapmpionships, but the 19-year-old is back and may wind up in a private duel with teammate Teramoto for a spot on the podium.

5. Ksenia Klimenko, Russia. Weak vaulting is likely to keep the deserving Klimenko, perhaps the most classical and fluid gymnast from Russia since the great Anna Pavlova, from rising much higher than fifth unless all of the leaders have multiple falls. After a frustrating performance at the Russian Championships last month, here’s hoping the Youth Olympic uneven bars champion uses this meet to rebuild her confidence.

Others who will challenge for the top five? There’s 2018 Youth Olympian Lee Yunseo, China’s talented but internationally inexperienced Liu Jingxing, Brazil’s Carolyne Pedro and Carina Kroll, one of the rising stars of a deeper-than-ever German team. One of the beauties of gymnastics, however, is that you never can tell what will happen on the day -- anything is possible.