Moscow hosts 24th International Artistic Gymnastics Tournament Mikhail Voronin Cup

 Moscow hosts 24th International Artistic Gymnastics Tournament Mikhail Voronin Cup

The opening ceremony of the 24th International Artistic Gymnastics Tournament Mikhail Voronin Cup is being held in the Moscow Olympic sports complex. The tournament was organized by the Dynamo Moscow Gymnastics Club named after Mikhail Voronin and the Moscow Dynamo Sports Club with the support of Russia's Sports Ministry, the Russian Federation of Sport Gymnastics and the Capital Department of Sport and Tourism.

The tournament is attended by participants from 26 countries, including Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan. Ukrainian athletes did not arrive to the competitions, but there are gymnasts from the proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic. Gymnasts from the US, Japan, Israel, Germany, France and Switzerland also came to the competition.

The main tournament referee Viktor Melnikov noted at the press conference before the opening ceremony that this tournament annually gathers the most promising gymnasts from all over the world, the correspondent of Vestnik Kavkaza reports.

A two-time Olympic gold medalist, vice-president of the Russian artistic gymnastics federation Svetlana Khorkina also addressed the press conference. "At the moment, our task is to continue holding our competitions at the highest level. I would like sports events were always be a priority for sports facilities owned by the State Sports Committee, and the children participating today have been approved in the lists of teams. We know the new rules for the selection for the Olympic Games in Tokyo, introduced by the International Federation, it will not be easy," she said.

Azerbaijani gymnasts Julia Inshina and Marina Nekrasova, speaking with Vestnik Kavkaza, said that they intend to perform new elements at the competition. "We have a task for the tournament - to try some new elements, as these are the concluding competitions of the season, and we need to keep ourselves in shape," Julia Inshina said.

"We have big plans for next year, we are developing a new routine, we will perform it, including here. I hope it will be successful," Marina Nekrasova added.

Azerbaijani junior Samad Mammadli, who became the champion of Azerbaijan in the 2000-2002 category a month ago, said that it's his first time at the international tournament in Moscow. "Since I am here for the first time, I plan to do my personal bests," he said.

The first day of competitions on Tuesday will be opened by performances of juniors. Then there will be performances of seniors. The final round of the contest in individual events will be held on Wednesday.