IWGA AotM September 2017

IWGA AotM September 2017

Identical twins Arina and Dina Averina (Russia) swept the table in Rhythmic Gymnastics at The World Games 2017, and again one month later at the World Championships. They are the IWGA Athletes of September 2017!

At The World Games, Arina took Gold in Ball, Hoop and Ribbon, and Bronze in Clubs, whereas Dina won the Clubs event and took silver in all the other events.

One month later, they were on top form again at the Rhythmic Gymnastics World Championships in Italy:

In the first finals, Hoop and Ball, the 19-year-olds wasted no time making them into a family affair. Choosing the most difficult Hoop exercise of the eight-woman field, Dina Averina claimed the first title of the championships after delivering a dramatic presentation to music from “Swan Lake,” her score edging Arina’s by only a tiny margin. With the Ball, it was Arina who prevailed with her preferred apparatus, depriving her twin of a second gold thanks to a slightly superior execution score.

On the second day, each twin added a second gold to her cache during finals with the Clubs and Ribbon. Though Dina won the Clubs – her preferred apparatus – by a wide margin, she left the door open with the Ribbon after a shakier than usual performance. Arina, whose Clubs routine netted her a bronze, did not miss the opportunity for another gold, reserving the top rung of the podium for herself with an on-point performance to Hungarian folk music. Even with a few imperfections, Dina's Ribbon routine merited a silver medal, a testament to the difficulty of her exercise.

With their World title count tied at two heading into the All-around final, Dina and Arina Averina went head to head once more for the overall crown. Over the course of the four-event final, Dina built a slow but steady lead over her older sister, eventually sealing the title with a strong and graceful performance with the Ribbon.

The latest in a long line of Russian Rhythmic princesses, the 19-year-old Averina twins have proven nearly untouchable in international competition all year. At the pinnacle of the season in Pesaro, with one or the other accounting for all five individual World titles, they lived up to the expectations of a country that has developed a taste for gold in this discipline.

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