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View Full Version : Anna Shershak - only 13???!!!



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Frau Muller
10-24-2011, 07:04 PM
Everybody knows about the allegation that tiny Chinese Gymnasts (& skaters?) falsify birth cirtificates and other documents to claim that they are older than the mandated ages for certain sports. Has the REVERSE ever been done? I specifically am thinking about the tall and very mature looking Russian skater Anna Shershak, who claims to have been born on June 6, 1998...exactly one day AFTER the birth of Yulia Lipnitskaia, also of Russia, who DOES look 13. Sorry but to my eyes, Shershak looks '13 going on 21.' See podium photos from Milan - compare Yulia and Anna, side by side. I have my movie of the event, incl model ceremonies, but don't know how to upload video clips. Perhaps someone has a photo?

Why would somebody do something like this, wanting to compete with much tinier and younger skaters?

gkelly
10-24-2011, 07:21 PM
Why would somebody look at a photo or video of a skater and immediately jump to the conclusion that she is lying about her age?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iVx_EAcXMac
To me, this looks like a kid who is tall for her age but not especially physically mature.

1) ISU junior age range is 13-18. If a skater first reaches an appropriate skill level to be sent to junior internationals from a country with a deep field as old as 18, she will have to compete with much tinier and younger skaters. We do see some 17- and 18-year-olds on the JGP who really do look like young women compared to the younger girls. But given the chance to compete internationally vs. staying home because there are too many higher ranked seniors in their home countries, why wouldn't they take the opportunity when offered? Same for older teens from smaller countries whose federations think their skill levels are better suited to junior than to senior competition.

2) Individuals mature at different rates. Some kids are still completely prepubescent at 13 and some girls are almost finished growing and maturing by that age. You can't tell just by looking at an adolescent exactly what her chronological age is.

For example, at my father and stepmother's wedding, my sister was walking down the hallway at the hotel carrying some flowers. A stranger asked her "Oh, are you the bride?"

She was 12. But her body and face both looked mature enough for her age that she could pass for a young adult.

Elite skaters tend to trend smaller and later to develop than the population as a whole. But if a skater who matures at a younger age can keep or develop the skills to compete at an elite level, more power to her.

julieann
10-24-2011, 07:44 PM
She looks 13 to me.

IceJunkie
10-24-2011, 07:57 PM
She doesn't look 21, IMO. Older than 13? Yeah, but not by much. She looks 17 at the oldest.

I've seen lots of 13-year-olds who look older.

bek
10-24-2011, 08:01 PM
How would the Russians benefit by lying about her age? If they were looking to lie about ages, I can think of more advantageous cases. (especially in the case of Sotnikova by one day)

caseyedwards
10-24-2011, 08:14 PM
To me she looked older than 13 and I was surprised to read that she was 13. I also can't see much advantage in making her younger.

pinky166
10-24-2011, 08:41 PM
She's just tall, from the looks of it she's likely around 170cm. But there are plenty of 13 year old girls that height, just not too many in the skating world. She looks maybe 14 or 15 but it's not even like she's particularly developed, so the 21 claims are rediculous. She still has the gangly tween-ish look to me. I do worry about her height becoming an issue, but just because the 13 year old girls we're used to seeing in figure skating and under 5 ft tall and 90 pounds, doesn't mean that Anna does not look 13 or is lying about her age. I mean she's an 8th grader, a lot of 8th grade girls look rather grown up.

Jenna
10-24-2011, 08:42 PM
Well, I agree that she looks older than 13.

There's no other indication that she isn't.

Ziggy
10-24-2011, 08:49 PM
She's also doing botox once a week in order for her cunning plan to be more convincing. :rolleyes:

bek
10-24-2011, 08:49 PM
Well, I agree that she looks older than 13.

There's no other indication that she isn't.

Not to mention even the Chinese haven't tried more than 2/3 years, and how would Anna or the Russians benefit in any ways. Anna would have a much easier time competiting against the likes of Leonova/Marakova than she would against the likes of the Russian wonder babies. Her best shot at going to worlds would have been this year, last year etc, than it would be two years from now.

The Russians have more wonder babies than JGP spots, so there would be no need to fake an older girls age. And as said before they have painful cases now when they are following the rules.

If Anna was a pairs/ice dancer there would be motive but she is not.

Plus with Sui/Han there is precedent, inconsistencies and motive.


She's also doing botox once a week in order for her cunning plan to be more convincing.

Yep. Russia and Anna's evil master plan, involving keeping a talented eligible skater ineligible, so she can compete against their vast Junior talent for a few valuable spots. Losing out in some of her best shots to make it out of Russia at a Senior international event. And costing them someone who could potential keep 3 spots for them next year at Worlds. Since their Senior level talent is inconsistent etc. Who cares that 2/3 years ago the situation for the Russian ladies was dire, and they would have jumped on Anna with arms wide open... or that she might have had a shot at the Olympics if she was eligible 2 years ago, given the talent of the Russian Senior ladies. Anna would much rather pretend to be 5 years younger. And compete with the babies who can out jump her. Then go to the Olympics or Worlds.

sk9tingfan
10-24-2011, 09:10 PM
She doesn't look 21, IMO. Older than 13? Yeah, but not by much. She looks 17 at the oldest.

I've seen lots of 13-year-olds who look older.

I was 6'1" with a figure by the time I was 12 and I'm half Russian. Totally not beyond the realm of possibility.

briancoogaert
10-24-2011, 09:42 PM
I have no real opinion. She doesn't look 13, but she doesn't look more than 15 to me. So, she may be a tall 13.

pinky166
10-24-2011, 10:07 PM
I'm curious about her height as it is not listed on her ISU bio. Polina Korobeynikova is listed as 168 cm which I believe is taller than all the other Russian ladies right now (maybe Ksenia is taller than that but idk), Anna to me looks at least as tall as Polina K. and maybe taller. And considering she is only 13, she could still grow. I wish there were more tall 170 cm+ ladies currently competing at the top level of skating, they always look so beautiful on the ice. Too many adult skaters the height and weight of a small child competing these days, I have to wonder what they eat (or don't eat!) to stay that way.

gkelly
10-24-2011, 10:33 PM
It's easier for smaller skaters to rotate in the air. Rotating in the air is an important skill in elite freestyle skating. Therefore elite freestyle skating self-selects for smaller athletes.

Skaters who are naturally smaller, and who develop late and remain smaller during the age when it's easiest to start learning triple jumps, tend to stay in the sport.

Skaters who are talented as children but who grow too much or too quickly during adolescence often end up dropping out of the sport before reaching elite levels -- in many cases they are no longer capable of performing some important skills they could execute before growing, much less learn new ones.

But some bigger skaters are able to execute the necessary skills to advance in elite competition. Good for them. It's nice to see average-sized and even taller-than-average people competing as well as naturally tiny people. Larger-than-average athletes usually end up switching to different sports where larger size is an advantage.

But that doesn't mean the tiny ones don't come by their tininess naturally, aside from controlling calorie intake to keep their weight on the low end of what's healthy for their body. (And some develop eating disorders, but then it becomes hard to sustain a competitive career.)

It's not as though basketball players are doing anything unnatural to make themselves unusually tall. That sport just self-selects for height in the same way that figure skating self-selects for smallness.

oleada
10-24-2011, 11:19 PM
Frau, your attempts to stIr shit on this forum get even lamer with each passing year