bnn.lv Latviski   bnn-news.com English   bnn-news.ru По-русски
Tuesday 21.11.2017 | Name days: Andis, Zeltīte
LithuaniaLithuania

Major upsets in Rio swimming pool and tennis court sour Lithuania’s Olympic mood

FaceBook
Twitter
Draugiem
print
(+2 rating, 2 votes)

Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RU

Rūta Meilutytė

Linas Jegelevicius for the BNN

Neither Rūta Meilutytė, the London 2012 Olympics swimming gold medallist, nor Giedrius Titenis, a European swimming championship’s bronze winner have even come close to their peak shape- and the previous results – in Rio Olympic Games.

Prior to that Ričardas Berankis, Lithuania’s tennis star holding 55th seed in ATP rankings, suffered the biggest tennis court upset of his life, unable to pull off a single set in the tennis tournament’s match in Rio against Australia’s John Millman.

Lithuanian swimming star’s upset

The shattering of Rio medal dreams for Lithuania has been especially painful in case of Rūta Meilutytė, who clocked in only the seventh result in the 100-meter women breaststroke final race.

At 1:07.32, the swimmer’s time was almost four seconds behind her world record that she claimed in 2013 and three seconds worse than that in London Olympics.

Choking back tears, she could hardly explain what went wrong in the swimming pool.

« I find it very hard to talk now…Few thoughts swirl in my mind now…I just wanted to touch the finish line as soon as I could…Perhaps I had let emotions to overwhelm my body…» Rūta Meilutytė snivelled before falling on her knees unable to utter a word.

Lilly King of the United States won the race on Monday, August 8, denying gold to Yulia Efimova, the steroid scandal-engulfed Russian swimmer, who was thumbed down with resounding boos from the Rio de Janeiro crowd. Katie Meili of the United States took the bronze.

King won the race in 1:04.93 minutes; Yefimova saw 1:05.50 and Meili had 1:05.69 minutes after the finish.

Coach in hot waters

After the star’s dismal performance many swimming experts and an army of Rūta Meilutytė fans started blasting her British coach Jon Rudd and insisted that she ought to ditch him for good after the Olympiad, but Meilutytė, who appeared in better moods a day after the competition, dismissed the proposition, claiming that all what she wanted now is to get some rest.

«Now I feel better, although I’ve slept little…Now I want to get some rest and not to think of anything. Tokyo Olympics is my goal, certainly…I hope I’ll draw necessary conclusions,» Meilutytė told lrytas.lt

Asked whether she made up her mind regarding the future of her coach, she evaded the question, saying that there was no arrangement between her and Jon Rudd as far as her future in Plymouth, where she studies and trains, is concerned.

«After the Games are over I will come back to Lithuania and then all depends on me. I don’t know yet when I will come back to Plymouth, but I will come back there as I have a flat there and my studies are not completed there yet…I have an excellent coach indeed, as well as the entire team. I couldn’t ask for a better team,» Meilutytė said.

Meanwhile, Jon Rudd said that «there are a lot of things» that need to be changed in Meilutytė’s training process.

«First when it comes to her physical training with her gym coach,» he noted before adding, « But first Rūta has to decide herself what she wants to do with swimming and her future.»

Montreal Olympics medalist very blunt

Many online zingers were harsh not only to the coach but the swimmer too, although a number of Lithuanian sports celebrities have come in Rūta’s support.

Especially bitter was Arvydas Juozaitis, the 1976 Montreal Olympic Games bronze medal winner in swimming and vice-president of Lithuania’s National Olympic Committee (LTOK), who confessed he was feeling a «cosmic disappointment» after Meilutytė’s 7th placing.

«Looking back to what has led to the result it is obvious to me that her coach was not up to the heights that Rūta had achieved…I don’t understand why she was racing the first 50 meters above her capacities? Off to a speedy start, she wears out her muscles and comes short in breath and strength when finishing. This is a mistake of the coach… Let’s admit he’s a mere college coach and Rūta is a golden grain to him. She has reached peak in swimming and she has changed physically a lot over the years…I wish she starts thinking now of a family, children and coming back to the pool as a coach,» Juozaitis told lrytas.lt

Many reasons count

Meilutytė’s first coach Giedrius Martinėnas believes that there is no «a single reason» to explain her unusually low Rio 100-meter breaststroke race result.

«There’s a bunch of reasons, I’d say. First, her psychological preparation which has not the best, obviously. She just looked too tense before the start. Second, the trauma she had before the Olympics and then comes improper technique of her swimming. It seems she has waded too much into physical training, not one focusing on developing speed and stamina,» Martinėnas pointed out.

He says the Rio performance is not an «end» to Rūta Meilutytė’s career and encouraged her to take some time to think about her future.

«To come back on track, she needs a year at least, or even two,» he suggested, agreeing that moving for training to the United States could work out good for the swimmer.

«The States are a leader in all sports and swimming, too,» he pointed.

Preparation mistakes

Gintautas Bartkus, vice- president of Lithuania’s Swimming Association, called the question «very hard» as to what went wrong in the swimming pool for Rūta Meilutytė and Giedrius Titenis, another Lithuanian swimming star, who failed to make finals in 100-meter and 200-meter men breast races.

«Perhaps there have been some mistakes in the swimmers’ pre-Olympic preparations. Perhaps the expectations hinged on them were too big. It is especially evident with Rūta who succumbed to the mounting psychological pressure,» Bartkus told BNN.

Asked to specify what kind of mistakes he referred to, Bartkus did not single out any, except claiming that the federation needs to hear our Meilutytė’s coach Jon Rudd first.

«We did not see a concrete plan he had drawn up for the training. We just knew what competitions Rūta would participate. That is how much we knew,» the Swimming Federation official admitted.

In his words, there were no «signals» that something might have been wrong in the preparation process.

«That it has not worked as planned signals that there might have been certain omissions (in the process) and we will want to review the preparation process in detail,» he underlined.

To the observation by many swimming experts that Meilutytė’s speed dropped dramatically in the second half of the race, Bartkus responded that, physically, the Lithuanian star is «perhaps bulkier than needed.»

«The size of her muscle mass is perhaps even bigger for the sport. There was nowhere the freshness we would usually see from Rūta in the swimming pool,» Bartkus noted.

Only swimmer herself can decide

As Meilutytė has missed an entire school year at Plymouth College in order to get better ready for Rio Olympics, he believes she will have to complete the studies before making a decision.

«As we are talking about a human being, a very inspiring one with a great record in sports, we cannot decide for her. It is absolutely up to Rūta to decide what fits her best. I am not 100 per cent sure that changing the coach will automatically bring better results in the pool. In fact, our federation had already considered the idea a couple of years ago,» the official admitted.

The federation hoped Gierius Titenis would be among the 100-meter and 200-meter race finalists and that Rūta Meilutytė would bring a Rio Olympic reward to Lithuania.

Upset on tennis court

After the Lithuanian tennis star Ričardas Berankis’ dismal appearance in Rio de Janeiro, Lithuanian tennis experts were also speechless, wondering what happened to the player who failed to win a set in the match against Australian John Millman.

«The result did catch me off-guard. It’s hard to believe Ričardas could not win a single set. Only he can explain what happened on the court,» Mindaugas Šerepka, director of Šiauliai Tennis School in Šiauliai in northern Lithuania, told BNN.

Ref: 111.111.111.3971


Leave a reply

European Parliament triggers punitive procedure against Poland

Members of the European Parliament have passed a resolution requesting for the application of the so-called «nuclear option» for Poland, Article 7 of the EU Treaty, because of the threat to the rule of law in the biggest Eastern European country.

BNN summary of the week: medicinal cannabis in Lithuania, cargo anti-record, and Lemberg’s dwindling influence in UGF

BNN offers a summary of this week’s topical news in a variety of categories: Fight; Growth; Truth; Future and Opinion.

NAF: Russia’s attitude remains unfriendly towards Latvia

So far Russia’s demonstrated attitude has remained unfriendly towards Latvia, said Commander of Latvian Armed Forces Leonīds Kalniņš in an interview to LNT.

Lembergs’ turn to testify before parliamentary committee has come

Aivars Lembergs, who is accused of serious crimes and is suspended from performing duties as chairman of Ventspils City Council, has been invited to come to a meeting of the Saeima’s Investigative Committee and answer questions associated with so-called oligarchs case.

How Latvian communities around the world plan to celebrate Latvia’s birthday?

«Celebration of independence of the Republic of Latvia is an important tradition that allows members of Latvia’s diaspora to maintain ties with their homeland – this year’s event will be even more expansive and inclusive than ever before. This is because events associated with the country’s hundredth birthday will be organized all around the world,» says manager of World Federation of Free Latvians office in Latvia Jānis Andersons.

European Parliament triggers punitive procedure against Poland

Members of the European Parliament have passed a resolution requesting for the application of the so-called «nuclear option» for Poland, Article 7 of the EU Treaty, because of the threat to the rule of law in the biggest Eastern European country.

Wage rules violations most often associated with envelope wages

To promote public awareness and improve commercial environment, honest competition and honest compliance with taxes, Latvia’s State Revenue Service intends to expand its database with new information about taxpayers, BNN was told by SRS.

Management of Unity’s Saeima faction to change in December

«Political consultations with all of Unity’s partner parties that are represented in the Saeima’s faction have concluded. An agreement has been reached to perform management change before the end of Saeima’s autumn session – around 21 December,» says Unity’s chairman Arvils Ašeradens.

EP prepared to commence talks with EU governments on reforming asylum system

The European Parliament is prepared to commence talks about reforming Dublin Regulation to ensure every member state is able to resettle a portion of asylum seekers.

Estonia to pour into Finnish-Estonian cultural fund 700 000 euros

Estonian cabinet of ministers has decided to attribute 700,000 euros to the Finno-Estonian Cultural Fund, an organisation working since 2015 aimed at fostering cooperation between the two states in culture, creative economy and training both for individuals and organizations.

Russia in UN vetoes extension of Syrian chemical attack investigation

At the UN Security Council, Russia has used its veto powers to block a resolution with which it would be allowed to continue the international investigation into a chemical attack this spring in Syria, which prompted the U.S. to launch missile strikes on a Syrian airbase.

Latvia’s birthday expected to be windy

A precipitation zone will reach Latvia from the west on Friday, 17 November. The precipitation zone will, however, pass over Latvia quickly, making rainfall short and periods of clear sky more frequent and longer. Air temperature is expected to stay within +5° C… +8° C, as reported by State Environment, Geology and Meteorology Centre.

State of emergency in force in flood-hit Greece

Rescue services in Greece are looking for no less than five people, who have gone missing following unexpected and disastrous floods on Wednesday, November 15, that killed 15 people; however, bad weather is still expected.

Laupīšanas 101 director: Latvia’s film industry has yet to reach its potential height

There is sufficient evidence to prove that Latvia’s film industry is capable, but at the same time many films are directed basically the same way. There is a lack of creativity, which means very slow development for the industry, said Kaspars Marhlevičs, director of short comedy Laupīšanas 101, in an interview to BNN.

Medical cannabis bill paves way in Lithuanian legislature

Otherwise conservative Lithuania has made a big stride forward legalising cannabis for medical use with 92 Lithuanian parliamentarians voting Thursday, November 15, to open the bill draft on medication containing cannabis. The law draft should go back to the parliamentary floor for deliberations on December 12.

Latvian sentenced to ten years in prison for fighting on the side of ISIS in Syria

On Thursday, 16 November, Latvian citizen Mārtiņš Grīnbergs was sentenced by Riga Regional Court to ten years and three months in prison for fighting on the side of Islamic State terrorist organization.

European Parliament: Africa’s development requires a new stimulus

To resolve economic, social and migration-related problems, which usually accompany lasting crises, better African-EU cooperation is needed, European Parliament members say.

Latvian Chamber for Commerce and Industry proposes preventing new MPC reforms

Increase of mandatory procurement components cannot be allowed. Exactly the opposite – this cost should be dropped entirely for end electricity prices in an attempt to improve international competitiveness of companies, BNN was told by council members of Latvian Chamber for Commerce and Industry.

Matīss: LDz cannot raise tariffs and perform rail electrification under cargo anti-record

Because Latvijas dzelzceļš has set an anti-record in cargo transports in the first ten months of this year, Saeima deputy and member of the National Economy Committee Anrijs Matīss says raising the fee for the use of infrastructure cannot be allowed. He adds that the intended railway electrification project should be considered very carefully.

Lithuania and Latvia placed in top 10 in climate policy index

In the annual Climate Change Performance Index, where climate policy action in 57 countries has been evaluated, on a scale from «very high» to «very low», 11 EU member states have been evaluated with as having been highly active, with Sweden showing the best results ahead of Lithuania, the UK, Finland and Latvia.

Bite Latvija buys Stream Networks and Latnet

Mobile commutations operator Bite Latvija has signed a purchase agreement for 100% of shares of Stream Networks and its subsidiary Latner Serviss, as BNN was informed by Bite manager in Latvia Kaspars Buls.

airBaltic carried three million passengers in first ten months of 2017

In the first ten months of 2017, airBaltic carried a total of 3,007,034 passengers to destinations in Europe, Scandinavia, Russia, CIS and the Middle East, BNN was told by the company.

Kaljulaid sees African opportunities to outplace EU in digitalisation

During a visit to Ethiopia, Estonian President Kersti Kaljulaid has discussed African-EU relations with the African Commissioner for Trade and Industry and recommended investing into digital development that would be beneficial for the continent itself.

Most employed people in Latvia are satisfied with their jobs

More and more often employers experience lack of qualified labour force, as well as increase of employees’ confidence about their competitiveness on the labour market and their openness for better job offers.

Estonian railways operator happy about increasing freight volume

Freight carried on the infrastructure of the Estonian state railway company Estonian Railways in October amounted to one million tons, which is a 10.4% hike compared to October 2016.