Romanian national team members outclassed their opponents in last week-end’s tri-meet held at Deva. The only real problem for the team remained the code of points, since the performance of the of the other teams was far below that of the Romanian gymnasts. The team coached by Octavian Belu, Mariana Bitang and Adrian Boboc took first place in the team event with 150.475pts, more than 12 points ahead of surprise second place finishers, the Bulgarian team (137.725). The French team placed third with a score of 136.275. The Romanian team also took the first 5 places in the unofficial all-around standings. In the absence of Andreea Raducan, Sabina Cojocar grabbed the spotlight, scoring a meet-high 9.775 on floor on her way to first place (37.85 pts). She was followed by Silvia Stroescu (37.775) Loredana Boboc (37.3), Alexandra Barac (36.9), and Andreea Ulmeanu (35.825). France’s Clelia Coutzac was the top finisher from the other countries, taking 6th place with 35.475 pts. Evgenia Kouznetsova of Bulgaria finished 7th (35,350 p). All competitors received flowers diplomas, and trophy cups from the local sponsors.
Despite the good results, head coach Octavian Belu said there’s still a lot of work to be done in order to ensure this team will produce the results everyone has come to expect from the Romanians. “This meet was meant as a practice meet in order to prepare for the upcoming World Championships in November. We wanted to evaluate the girls’ progress and get the judges’ opinion on their routines in order to correct any mistakes that surfaced. I’m not pleased with the results because I expected more out of the new gymnasts, but the competition atmosphere probably didn’t motivate them enough. We’re trying to find a way to get rid of all the falls and also replace the four gymnasts who left the team after Sydney.”