Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Alicia Sacramone's Farewell?

Though I have been critical at times of Nastia Liukin's comeback, like most viewers and fans, I was incredibly moved Sunday night by the way she handled herself after she fell from bars. That fall looked like it hurt and I felt some of my harder feelings towards Liukin melt as I watched her try to contain her emotions and remount the bar and finish her routine like a champ. And I cheered hard for her as she wrapped up a great gymnastics career on the balance beam to a standing ovation from the crowd. I'm truly pleased that Liukin had the opportunity to go out in such a fashion.

But what about Alicia Sacramone? This gymnast has been around the senior elite ranks longer than Liukin and had also staged a wonderful comeback--she tore her Achilles at the end of October and made it back on two events in record time. She was brilliant on beam and vault throughout Nationals and Trials.

And because of her fantastic performances, fans didn't realize they were seeing perhaps (?) the final elite routines from Sacramone. Most observers gave her a legitimate shot of at least being named as an alternate to the team. That didn't happen for reasons I (grumble, grumble) understand--uneven bars--even if I am not super pleased about it.

Obviously I don't wish that Sacramone had performed poorly instead, making it obvious to fans that we were witnessing her final gymnastics performances as we all recognized when it came to Liukin, but I still wish that she received a similar reception. She, like Liukin, has given her body and soul to this sport. (Chellsie Memmel too!)

There should've been two standing ovations the other night. One for Liukin, who in her fallibility showed a lot of class and strength, and one for Sacramone, who has always shown tremendous heart out on the floor.

Here's Sacramone way back in 2003 performing one of the first floor routines I've ever seen her do. Even back then, she had all of the qualities we've come to love about her--the power, the sass, the attitude.


Keegan_x said...

That video is off my channel, and I thought no one bothered to watch! Haha anyway I totally agree with you, she's one of my favourite gymnasts and it never really properly sunk in that trials was probably her last Hurrah.

Dvora Meyers said...

Yeah. And while Nastia's performance was emotional, I think that Bross and Sacramone didn't get their proper due.