Tashkent hosts Rhythmic Gymnastics World Cup and Happy Caravan tournament

20 May 2012

Tashkent hosts Rhythmic Gymnastics World Cup and Happy Caravan tournament

From 18 to 20 May Tashkent hosted the Rhythmic Gymnastics World Cup and the Happy Caravan international tournaments attended by gymnasts from Europe, Asia and South America.

The Honorary President of the Asian Gymnastics Union, President of Uzbekistan’s Gymnastics Federation Lola Karimova-Tillyaeva welcomed the participants at the opening ceremony of the tournaments.

“I’m very pleased to welcome you today in Tashkent in this important Olympic year as we are looking forward to following the performances of our sports people at the London Olympics this summer. On behalf of the Gymnastics Federation of Uzbekistan and on my own behalf, I would like to express my sincere gratitude to all the participants and coaches in this tournament for all their hard work. It’s thanks to you that today we have an opportunity to enjoy this amazing and fascinating event being presented to us by rhythmic gymnastics,” Karimova-Tillyaeva said.

At a news conference held following the opening ceremony Lola Karimova-Tillyaeva, the President of Russia’s Federation of Rhythmic Gymnastics Irina Viner, FIG/RG Technical Committee member Noha Abou Shabana and the head coach for the Belarus national team Irina Leparskaya answered questions from journalists.

Participants in the Tashkent World Cup included world champion Alexandra Merkulova (Russia), World Championship 2011 silver medallists Lubov Charkashina and Melitina Staniouta (Belarus); World championship 2011 bronze medallists Aliya Garayeva (Azerbaijan) and Neta Rivkin (Israel); Asian Games champion Anna Alabyeva (Kazakhstan). These gymnasts will be representing their countries at the 2012 London Olympics.

The President of Russia’s Rhythmic Gymnastics Federation Irina Viner, who was the sporting event’s honorary guest, praised the Tashkent tournaments saying they were organized in keeping with the standards of world championships.

A gala concert to mark the 100th anniversary of gymnastics in Uzbekistan was held at the end of the sporting events.