An Australian gymnast, Emily Little, is an outstanding sportswoman as she managed to become 2012 Olympic all-around finalist. Recently she took part at the Challenge Cup of Szombathely, Hungary that was held in October 7-9. Emily Little got the gold medal on balance beam and won the silver medal on vault.
A veteran of three world championships, Little placed 15th all-around at the 2012 Olympic Games in London and third on vault at the 2016 Olympic test event held in Rio de Janeiro in April. She finished third all-around, first on vault, and third on balance beam and floor exercise at the Australian Championships in May.
Little did not get the opportunity to compete at the Rio Games in August since after Australia placed fifth at the test event, from which the top four teams advanced to the Games.
Emily Little is a very ambitious gymnast. In this interview she expressed her thoughts about Rio and shared with us her plans for the coming year.
- What were your goals for Szombathely, and how do you assess your performance in terms of your goals?
- My goals for this competition were to make both my beam and vaults cleanly. I added a new mount and a new connection on beam, with the new Code in mind, so I wanted to make both of those skills, which I managed to do. Vault was another chance to practice competing, and I feel confident that I am ready to upgrade on vault.
- 2016 might be considered a difficult year for the Australian team. What has given you the motivation to continue, even after your team qualified only one gymnast for Rio?
- If anything I hope that this year has made the team stronger and more motivated to do better in the next (Olympic) cycle. We haven't had the best team outcomes but I think that when someone has the most difficult times is when we learn the most about ourselves. I have been lucky enough to gain a sponsor and I have a good team of supportive people around me, so I feel as though the next couple of years can be the best of my career if I put in the hard work.
- What were your impressions of Larrissa's performance in Rio, especially having competed many times with her on the team?
- I think she had a lot of pressure on her as the only gymnast competing from Australia. Her bars routine was very nice and she was going for difficulty on floor. She is a good competitor on teams, and I believe not having a team in Rio left her at a disadvantage.
- Although you were an all-around finalist in London, there is a trend for the more veteran gymnasts to end up specializing in one or more apparatuses. Does your success on beam and vault in Hungary indicate that these might become your specialties? Or if that is just a coincidence, what are your plans for continuing as an all-arounder?
- I plan to continue as an all-arounder. I am able to do all four events and I enjoy them all. Most of my focus will be put into vault, and I'll be looking to upgrade on floor and beam. Bars is not my best apparatus but I'll be competing a clean, safe routine.
- Looking ahead to 2017, what are your plans in terms of international gymnastics and life outside the gym?
- I would like to do the World Cup circuit. I have already met so many amazing gymnasts and I would like to practice competing new skills. I want to start studying. I feel as though I'm getting old as a gymnast and need to start planning for my future outside of the gym. Personal training or massage will be on my agenda for next year.
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