Russia gymnast Kanayeva captures fourth gold at worlds

Kyodo News

Beijing Olympic champion Yevgeniya Kanayeva of Russia won the ball and ribbon events Thursday to take her gold medal tally to four at the Rhythmic Gymnastics World Championships.

Kanayeva earned 28.575 points in the final of the ball event and scored 28.000 for her ribbon routine at Mie Prefectural Sun Arena, adding to her victories in the rope exercise and hoop routine here on Tuesday.

Aliya Garayeva of Azerbaijan won the silver medal in the ball event with 27.325, while Ukraine’s Anna Bessonova scored 27.250 for the bronze.

Bessonova placed second in the ribbon with 27.900, while Silviya Miteva of Bulgaria took third with 26.850.

No Japanese gymnasts made it to either the ball or ribbon finals, but Mai Hidaka progressed to Friday’s individual all-around final, placing 24th in the heats with a total of 74.600 points. Kanayeva went through in first place with 86.100.

Hidaka became the first Japanese to make it to the final since Yukari Murata did it in 2005.