LONDON – Israel’s representatives in the rhythmic gymnastics competitions begin
their Olympics on Thursday, looking to bring a little cheer to a despondent
delegation following the failure to win a medal for the first time since the
Neta Rivkin, competing in the individual all-around
qualification, and the Israel team, taking part in the group all-around
qualification, will be expecting to make their respected finals following the
end of the two days of qualifying on Friday, but neither have a realistic chance
of reaching the podium.
At just 17-years-old, Rivkin was the youngest
member of the Israeli delegation to the Beijing Games four years
Rivkin was added to the delegation as one of three up-and-coming
athletes who fell just short of the criteria and exceeded all expectations by
ending the competition in 14th place.
She showed consistent progress in
the four years since, ending the all-around competition at the World
Championships in Montpellier, France in 10th position last year.
will perform with each apparatus (rope, hoop, ball, clubs or ribbon) in the
qualification round, with the top 10 athletes advancing to the final for one
more routine with each apparatus.
The Israel team, which includes Polina
Zakaluzny, Eliora Zholkovsky, Viktoriya Koshel, Noa Palatchy, Moran Buzovski and
Marina Shults (only five will compete), will perform with five balls for the
first routine and in the second routine will perform using three ribbons and two
hoops. The scores for these routines will be combined and the top eight groups
will progress to the final.
All six members of the current team were not
part of the Israel side which finished in sixth place at the Beijing Games, but
will be aiming to repeat their predecessors’ achievement.
The women’s 470
Class sailing team of Gil Cohen and Vered Bouskila ended their disappointing
Olympics in 15th place on Wednesday, finishing the day’s races in 12th and 17th.
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