U.S. team protests rhythmic gymnastics result
Posted: Thursday August 26, 2004 2:27PM; Updated: Thursday August 26, 2004 2:27PM
ATHENS, Greece (AP) -- Upset with the technical marks given to American Mary Sanders in rhythmic gymnastics qualifying Thursday, the United States team filed a protest with the International Gymnastics Federation seeking a review of her routines.
Sanders finished 18th of 24 gymnasts in the first of two qualifying rounds. The top 10 gymnasts after Friday's second round advance to finals. Sanders received technical scores, which judge difficulty, of 4.6 in hoop and 6.8 in ball. The 4.6 was lower than anyone in the field except for competitors from Australia, South Africa and Cape Verde.
"They felt it was absolutely too low for that routine," said USA Gymnastics spokesman Brian Eaton. "There were no major errors. She didn't leave out any elements."
Eaton said the protest was filed before scores were made official and that FIG accepted the protest and was reviewing it. FIG spokesman Philippe Silacci did not immediately return messages left by The Associated Press.
The latest protest adds to a rash of complaints and protests that took place during the artistic gymnastics competition, which ended Monday.
Most notably, the South Koreans asked for a review of Yang Tae-young's score on parallel bars in the all-around and FIG determined he had been scored a tenth of a point too low. That would have given Yang the gold medal instead of bronze and knocked American Paul Hamm from gold to silver.
FIG suspended the judges but would not overturn results.
In this case, the protest was lodged in time and Sanders' score could be changed, Eaton said.