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feraina
08-15-2011, 03:40 AM
Sui/Han have an interesting exhibition piece for the new season that they just performed at a show in Korea:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OKVQcj61Nc8

They are looking really good for the new season! :rollin: Seem already improved from last season. Can't wait for the new competitive season to begin!

kwanfan1818
08-15-2011, 05:09 AM
Once Zhang/Wang are withdrawn officially, the alternates list is:

Denney/Coughlin
Sui/Han
Lawrence/Swiegers
Gerboldt/Enbert
Castelli/Shnapir
Stolbova/Klimov
Marley/Brubaker
Kadlecova/Bidar
Dong/Wu

Once they each get one (a second for all but D/C), the federations can choose from the top three of:

Yu/Jin
Cain/Regan
Steele/Schultz
Purich/Schultz
Jones/Gaskell

winners of the six Fall senior B's, if they're not already on the list.

Pang/Tong's and Zhang/Wang's CoC spots revert to TBD. P/T's NHK spot should be assigned to Denney/Coughlin.

That leaves Sui/Han as the next alternate on the list and the first ones eligible for a second spot (except for SC). I don't know why the Chinese Federation would use a TBD when Sui/Han are pretty much guaranteed another GP spot, regardless of the politics. The Jr. Grand Prix is over, except for the Final, before the Grand Prix starts, so there would be no scheduling conflict. Plus, they like Yu/Jin will be competing just outside of Toronto the week before.

The Chinese Fed, which pays travel expenses for CoC, could spring for the Air Canada/China direct flight from Toronto to Shanghai if they want to assign either of their SC pairs to CoC, but Yu/Jin are much less likely to get a second GP spot from the alternates list, since they're currently 10th on it, and it would be possible for the host federations to skip them and choose another team from the top 3.

luCN
08-15-2011, 06:48 AM
well,maybe they're afraid S/H may do better in GS series and GPF than Z/Z,as ZZ are still have some injures and far from their best yet,then it's difficult to deside the Worlds team~

kwanfan1818
08-15-2011, 10:05 AM
By the rules, S/H get the next opening, although not the TBD's for CoC. Of course, the Fed can lose their visa paperwork or withdraw them for any reason they want, if they really want to block S/H from their second or even their first senior GP.

By withdrawing Pang/Tong made getting to the GPF easier for everyone, except maybe S/S and V/T.

feraina
08-15-2011, 07:46 PM
well,maybe they're afraid S/H may do better in GS series and GPF than Z/Z,as ZZ are still have some injures and far from their best yet,then it's difficult to deside the Worlds team~

I think they might also be afraid of S/H garnering too much popularity at home by competing and doing well at CoC, possibly beating Z/Z along the way -- leading to a public outcry of not sending them to Worlds.

Also, their expressiveness and energy could make Z/Z look especially wooden and uninteresting by comparison. (Although personally I'd love to see Z/Z doing well, and hope sincerely that a year off ice has done them good in maturing in the presentation department.)

If P/T are still competing, then unless Z/Z totally bomb the GP's, I cannot see Yao Bin sending S/H over Z/Z no matter how much better they do in competition. Sad, but true. :blah:

Let me translate the whole article. Yao Bin pointedly forgets to mention S/H altogether. Not to mention that S/H have done way better than Z/W already, and yet he suggests Z/W are candidates for #4 (after S/Z, P/T, and Z/Z) while neglecting to mention S/H. :blah:

There were rumors earlier in the summer that S/H were going to get two GP's, but the Chinese federation specifically requested them to get only one, because it intended to send them to the JGP's again. If it is not a hard block, it is at least a soft hindrance -- instead of nurturing and promoting the most promising junior pair China has had in many years (maybe ever! Even Shen/Zhao were not doing this well at this age). :mad: :mad:

feraina
08-15-2011, 08:13 PM
Just as the 2011-2012 Figure Skating Season about to begin, pairs new star Yue Zhang will not be able to compete the entire season, due to an Achille's tendon injury.

According to the National Figure Skating Team Coach Bing Yao, Zhang was hurt in practice last week, "There was a rupture to her left knee cruciate ligament, she plans on checking into the hospital and having the surgery tomorrow. It takes about 100 days to recover, probably this young pair will not be able to compete this season!"

Zhang and partner Lei Wang are a new promising pair rising through the ranks in recent years, and strong candidates to be #4 in the country. "They were training well a while ago, including technique and difficulty, and the new program is well choreographed too. But all of a sudden, they were injured," said Yao with a sigh.

If not for this unexpected twist, Zhang and Wang would have participated in the season-opening national competition in Chang Cun September 20-23 -- National Figure Skating Championship, also the qualifying competition for the 12th National Winter Games Figure Skating event. Internationally, their first competition would have been Grand Prix Cup of China in Shanghai on November 4-6.

Before the Turin Olympics, famous pairs athlete Hongbo Zhao also encountered injured Achille's tendon. But armed with steely will and a fighter's spirit, he made an extraordinary return to the ice after only half a year, attaining a bronze medal with Xue Shen in the Winter Olympics. Yao said, "Yue Zhang is still young, she can definitely return to competition next season if she is determined herself."

According to the Cup of China roster published by the ISU in June, besides Zhang/Wang, another top Chinese pair, silver medalists at the Vancouver Olympics, Pang/Tong were also scheduled to compete in Cup of China. However, recent rumors suggested that Pang/Tong will give up on all Grand Prix event this season, in order to have a rest.

"It is true that #2 (Pang/Tong) will really not participate in the Grand Prix competitions this season, but next March they will still attend the World Championship," said Yao. Reducing the number of competition and focusing on rest and recover is Pang and Tong's own idea, "The team respects their choice, after all they are not so young anymore, year after year of intense competition and training are understandably exhausting."

Yao indicated that the two open slots at Cup of China will be given to younger team members.

kittyjake5
08-15-2011, 08:17 PM
^Thanks for the update. That is to bad about Zhue's injury. Wishing a speedy recovery.

julieann
08-15-2011, 08:34 PM
Yao Bin pointedly forgets to mention S/H altogether.

I'm curious why you think Yao Bin needs to mention other skaters he doesn't coach? Other coaches don't do that.

I'm also curious why you think Z/Z (or others) are so afraid of S/H? S/H personal best scores are no where near what that Zhangs where getting before he got injured (Worlds 2010) so the chances of them beating them this season are highly unlikely especially if you have seen both of their skating so far this season.

feraina
08-15-2011, 09:22 PM
I'm curious why you think Yao Bin needs to mention other skaters he doesn't coach? Other coaches don't do that.

Yao Bin is not only a coach, he is the head of the Chinese National Team. Sui/Han belong to the National Team just as the other pairs do. He wasn't just speaking on behalf of his own personal students in that interview, he was speaking on behalf of the entire team. In terms of the power structure, he is certainly the most powerful person in China to decide international assignments for pairs.


I'm also curious why you think Z/Z (or others) are so afraid of S/H?

Well, for sure Z/W and D/W have a lot to fear from S/H. They have been on the scene for several years now without attaining any success/name for themselves, while S/H stirred excitement in their first year of JGP eligibility and have risen through the international ranks very quickly.


S/H personal best scores are no where near what that Zhangs where getting before he got injured (Worlds 2010) so the chances of them beating them this season are highly unlikely especially if you have seen both of their skating so far this season.

I have seen some fuzzy videos of their exhibitions this summer, and while they seem more connected to each other and to the audience in these shows, I have not seen how much of their former technical capability they have recovered, and we also do not know how much their new found "expression" will hold up in a stressful, competitive environment.

I'm not saying that S/H will definitely beat them in competition, but I do think S/H present the biggest, and a credible, threat. An opinion poll last season in FSU actually had S/H slightly ahead of Z/Z in Chinese pairs ranking.

The most worrying thing for Z/Z is that personal development-wise and results-wise, they were regressing even before his injury. As the reigning Olympics silver medalists, Worlds silver medalists, GPF silver medalists, and many consistent gold medals on the GP's, they got only 2nd & 3rd in GP's, last place in GPF, 5th in the Olympics, and 5th at Worlds. They were on a very clear and serious decline before last season.

What is especially worrying is that the decline happened while they retained most of their technical capability. The judges just dropped them on the PCS side.

Maybe this injury was a blessing in disguise, because it stopped the slide in competitive results, and maybe provided them a chance to work on skating and presentation skills. It is certainly a great opportunity for them to come back with a fresh, more mature look. But their challenges are great -- they have a lot to prove.

S/H have their obvious flaws, but the judges loved them the last two seasons. There is a lot of excitement surrounding them, and they clearly have momentum behind them.

julieann
08-15-2011, 10:56 PM
Yao Bin is not only a coach, he is the head of the Chinese National Team. Sui/Han belong to the National Team just as the other pairs do. He wasn't just speaking on behalf of his own personal students in that interview, he was speaking on behalf of the entire team. In terms of the power structure, he is certainly the most powerful person in China to decide international assignments for pairs.

Are you sure he was speaking as the head of the national team and not just the head coach of his skaters? It wasn't clearly defined and he surely isn't obligated. It's not like they are not skating anywhere.


Well, for sure Z/W and D/W have a lot to fear from S/H. They have been on the scene for several years now without attaining any success/name for themselves, while S/H stirred excitement in their first year of JGP eligibility and have risen through the international ranks very quickly.

That's not what I asked. I asked about the Zhangs.


I have seen some fuzzy videos of their exhibitions this summer, and while they seem more connected to each other and to the audience in these shows, I have not seen how much of their former technical capability they have recovered, and we also do not know how much their new found "expression" will hold up in a stressful, competitive environment.

I think they can deal with stress far better than S/H can, they are 3 time Olympians (and Olympic Silver Medalists) and 4 time world Medalists.


I'm not saying that S/H will definitely beat them in competition, but I do think S/H present the biggest, and a credible, threat. An opinion poll last season in FSU actually had S/H slightly ahead of Z/Z in Chinese pairs ranking.

The biggest threat for Z/Z in the GP is from S/S and possible B/L at Skate America and K/S in China and S/S, B/L, K/S and V/T in the GPF.


The most worrying thing for Z/Z is that personal development-wise and results-wise, they were regressing even before his injury. As the reigning Olympics silver medalists, Worlds silver medalists, GPF silver medalists, and many consistent gold medals on the GP's, they got only 2nd & 3rd in GP's, last place in GPF, 5th in the Olympics, and 5th at Worlds. They were on a very clear and serious decline before last season.

P/T also got 4th in 2009 at worlds but that didn't stop them from winning an OSM almost winning an OGM and one month later winning a world title. S/S had a great season in 2008-2009 but a not so great season in 2009-2010. How did they do this year? Pretty well I'd say. The only thing holding him back is a finger injury, that can happen to anyone, what's bad about his, is that he can re-injure his and he's out for good.


What is especially worrying is that the decline happened while they retained most of their technical capability. The judges just dropped them on the PCS side.

The judges didn't drop them, they dropped themselves, there is a big difference. Better choreography may make all the difference in the world for them.


S/H have their obvious flaws, but the judges loved them the last two seasons. There is a lot of excitement surrounding them, and they clearly have momentum behind them.

The judges noticed them more last season because they were more prominent in the absence of better teams like Zhang and Zhang, Kavaguti and Smirnov, Volosozhar and Morozov, Mukhortova and Trankov, Dube and Davison, Langlois and Hay etc....The judges didn't "love" them anymore than they would have than the other teams that were competing, they just would have scored them on the junior level instead of the senior level.

I think everyone is waiting to see if she'll grow.

luCN
08-16-2011, 01:57 AM
julieann,maybe you Love Bin Yao,and don't want to see anything agaist him.But,in the artical,he is speaking as "the head of the china figure skating team",he is speaking as a head,not a personal coach.and he's totally forgot S/H,who at least be the 3rd pair in China last season,and after P/T skip the GPs,they should be the 2nd.

agree it or not,S/H's coach is Luan,who don't have much power in the chinese federation.all the fans in china want S/H have a fair treatment,not to compare with Z/Z,but other teams like Z/W,DW...

feraina
08-16-2011, 03:36 AM
Are you sure he was speaking as the head of the national team and not just the head coach of his skaters?

Actually, it was. I didn't translate it quite accurately. It literally says at the beginning of the article, "According to the National Figure Skating Team Head Coach Bin Yao...". Luan is a coach under him, just as the other coaches for the team, even if Luan coaches physically at a Harbin center not in Beijing.


That's not what I asked. I asked about the Zhangs.

Well, excuse me for expressing an opinion about something that you didn't ask for. :confused:


I think they can deal with stress far better than S/H can, they are 3 time Olympians (and Olympic Silver Medalists) and 4 time world Medalists.

That's a subjective statement. S/H did very well with the pressure of competing on the senior level in their first season last year, and should grow in maturity this year. Obviously Z/Z have been good about that too, or they wouldn't have achieved what they did. But the fact remains that they have yet to go head-to-head in international competitions, and nobody knows for now how Z/Z will handle competitive pressure after having a bad season followed by being off the ice altogether.


The biggest threat for Z/Z in the GP is from S/S and possible B/L at Skate America and K/S in China and S/S, B/L, K/S and V/T in the GPF.

I thought it would be obvious I meant Z/Z's biggest threat among Chinese pairs on the GP's.


The judges didn't drop them, they dropped themselves, there is a big difference. Better choreography may make all the difference in the world for them.

The judges may have dropped them because they dropped themselves, or because of bad choreography, or maybe a combination of factors. In any case, it is up to Z/Z to impress the judges again, whether through better programs or expression or whatever.


The judges noticed them more last season because they were more prominent in the absence of better teams like Zhang and Zhang...

Sure, the same might be said about the rise of Z/Z in the first place, or a number of other teams.


The judges didn't "love" them anymore than they would have than the other teams that were competing, they just would have scored them on the junior level instead of the senior level.

Well, that's also rather subjective, isn't it? And impossible to check. We can see how S/H do this season against all the other veteran teams. I wish S/H would have the chance of doing 2 GP's without the exhaustion and time demands of JGP's -- even if JGP's finish before the GP's, they could've used that time to train on their technique and skating skills and refining details of the programs instead.


I think everyone is waiting to see if she'll grow.

One might also wonder if Dan Zhang has grown taller still/fuller-figured, or if Hao Zhang will totally regain competitive fitness after a year off.

But anyway, I don't want to set it up to be S/H against Z/Z. I root for both teams. I'm just upset that the Chinese federation so much disfavors S/H and they might not be given as much opportunity and nurturing as they deserve.

feraina
08-16-2011, 03:47 AM
To be exact, according to Yao Bin's official website:
http://www.sports.cn/starclub/yaob/bak/2004-11-23/399219.html
He is not just the head coach of the pairs figure skating division of the National Team, but the Head Coach of the entire Team. Administratively, all the other dance coaches and singles coaches are under him too, including Mingzhu li, former coach of Caroline Zhang and Chen Lu, current coach of Zijun Li.

If you think about it, it is a total conflict of interest for one of the national team coaches to be the administrative head of the entire team. There should be a separation of responsibilities. Someone not affiliated with any particular athlete or coaching team ought to be on top, making objective decisions about whom to send to which competitions. In which other federation does this happen? How would people feel in the U.S. if say... Tom Zakrajsek had major political power within the USFSA and had a big say over whom to invite to SA or send to ISU championships?? (Frank Carroll will spit blood, probably, for one thing ;) )

It's not only other pairs coaches and their students that worry about fair treatment, but indeed other skating disciplines, since the federation prioritizes funding and resources for the Pairs discipline. How many other Chinese skaters or teams, besides Yao Bin's pairs, and maybe Sui/Han after last season, get to have foreign choreographers or custom-made costumes?? Almost none. Besides Mingzhu Li's 3 top girls (Zijun Li, Bingwa Geng, Kexin Zhang) who got their programs last season from Karen Kwan over 3 days (because they were able to get a "bulk discount" from Karen Kwan, who is a personal friend of Li and was traveling in Asia anyway to accompany Michelle to a show in Korea), I cannot think of any who are competing right now. S/H have a new FS from Zoueva this season, but are having to keep their SP. I don't think the top men skaters, Nan Song or Han Yan, got any perks like that, nor the top ice dance teams.

I recall Mingzhu Li saying in an interview once that the women's team doesn't get enough training time because so much of the team ice time is assigned to Pairs, that she's having to make private deals with the Pairs coaching team so that her girls can get a little more time on the ice each day.

I'm not saying this is all Bin Yao's fault or anything. But Chinese Skating needs to have an independent administrative body with no ties to any particular athlete or coach. Then not only will there be more fairness in the distribution of funds, assignments, ice time, and so on, but also a better system for holding coaches and athletes accountable for personal integrity, like truthful reporting of age.

jjane45
08-16-2011, 04:16 AM
Thank you feraina for the translation and sharing your insights.

oleada
08-16-2011, 04:22 AM
Thanks feraina for the translation - I agree with your opinions. I think it's definitely a conflict of interest.