The 2011 Doha, Qatar FIG Challenge World Cup competition held March 30, 2011 until April 1, 2011 was an FIG C III competition in Menâ€™s and Womenâ€™s Artistic Gymnastics. This is the second time this meet has been an FIG World Cup event. This year, all FIG Challenge World Cups with Individual Apparatus Finals have prize money in this competition amounting to $55,000. The Doha Cup, as one of the â€˜Bâ€™ Series of World Cups is an apparatus only competition with no all around. FIG Challenge Cups allow a maximum of two participating gymnasts per country and event.
Eighty gymnasts, including 55 men and 25 women, from 24 different countries, representing all the continents performed in the Aspire Academy Dome. This was the fourth in the series of six FIG World Cup competitions held in 2011. All of these competitions have qualification rounds to qualify the best eight gymnasts per apparatus to the Finals. Qatar, as the host country, will be allowed one additional wild card competitor in each Menâ€™s and Womenâ€™s apparatus event if the host federation fails to qualify anyone for the Finals.
There have been years when the Doha World Cup has been a more important meet with more of the more powerful countries participating. This year, because of its close proximity to the 2011 European Championships in Berlin, Germany starting only three days after the completion of this meet, the best European gymnasts, from counties like Russia, Romania and Great Britain are not competing at the Doha Cup. So not only is this a “B” Cup meet where not all of the gymnasts have to have competed at last World Championships, but this year it is somewhat of a secondary level competition for gymnasts not competing at the Europeans, but it is a chance to see gymnasts from other countries who don’t always make it to the bigger world competitions finals.
That said, there will be some of the top worldâ€™s gymnasts competing, including Daniela Hypolito of Brazil and Kai of China. Daniela Hypolito is a veteran of three Olympic Games who is preparing for her fourth Olympic Games in London in 2012. HypÃ³lito was the first gymnast from Brazil ever to win a medal at the World Championships, a silver medal on floor exercise in the 2001 World Championships and has a tumbling skill named after her.
Zou Kai, 2008 triple Olympic gold medalist and 2009 World high bar champion, not only was outstanding at the Beijing Olympic Games but has incredibly high difficulty on floor (6.7) and is only one of three Chinese Olympic champions on Floor. His gymnastics club is located in Sichuan, China and he is coached by Bai Yuanshao.
That does not make it second rate by any means — indeed, Doha is an opportunity to see more of the developing rivalry between newly minted seniors Tan Sixin and Yao Jinnan, who starred at the Cottbus World Cup several weeks ago. After Wednesday’s preliminary round, Yao is leading floor and is second to Tan on bars and beam.
Host country Qatar have six gymnasts competing, two WAG (Aljazy Al-Habshi & Shaden Wohdan) and four MAG (Nasser Alhamad, Mahmood Alsadi, Ahmed Aldayan and Malek Alyahri). Mohammed Al Jaber, Secretary-General, QGF, said:
Also competing is Ali Al Asi, of Jordan, who in 2010 won his country’s second FIG World Cup gold medal. He won the gold medal on Rings and is regarded as somewhat of a legend in Arab sports, having been crowned The Best Arab Athlete of 2010 after that victory.
Here is video of the entire 2011 beam event finals competition.