Gymnasts eye medals at Worlds

Greece’s Vassilis Tsolakidis qualified for the final of the parallel bars event at the World Gymnastics Championships in Melbourne, Australia, yesterday after finishing tied first place in the qualifying round. Tsolakidis, who has yet to win a major international title, shared top spot in the qualifying round with Slovenia’s Mitja Pekovesk. Both were given scores of 9.737, just ahead of Olympic champion Valeri Goncharov of Ukraine, whose routine was judged with a 9.700 score. Greece’s Vlassis Maras, a 22-year-old gymnast with World and European titles to his credit, tied for second spot in the high bar with China’s Qin Xiao for a place in the final. They registered scores of 9.687. Japan’s Hiroyuki Tomita ended first with a 9.737 score. Olympic champion Demosthenes Tampakos failed to qualify for the final in the rings. He ended ninth with a score of 9.525. Tampakos would make the final if one of the higher-ranked competitors were to pull out. The apparatus finals are scheduled for this weekend.

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