© Ricardo Bufolin

BAKU, Azerbaijan, Sept. 21, 2019 – The USA’s group finished 10th in the all-around at the 2019 World Rhythmic Gymnastics Championships at the National Gymnastics Arena in Baku, Azerbaijan. U.S.-based fans can watch an encore presentation of the all-around finals tonight at 6 p.m. ET on the Olympic Channel with a simulcast. Competition concludes tomorrow with the group gymnastics event finals at 2:30 p.m. Baku/6:30 a.m. ET and will be livestreamed by the Olympic Channel.

The U.S. group, which competed in the first subdivision, earned a 25.050 for the 5 balls routine for 12th place and a 25.600 for 3 hoops/2 pairs of clubs for 10th, the USA’s highest finish in the group World all-around. The USA’s all-around mark was 50.650 for 10th in the all-around rankings. The top eight for each event advance to the finals tomorrow. Russia won the group all-around gold medal at 58.700. Japan and Bulgaria claimed the silver (58.200) and bronze (58.00), respectively.

The members of the U.S. group are: Isabelle Connor of Manhattan Beach, Calif.; Connie Du of Deerfield, Ill.; Yelyzaveta Merenzon of Buffalo Grove, Ill.; Elizaveta Pletneva of Deerfield, Ill./; Nicole Sladkov of Vernon Hills, Ill./; and Kristina Sobolevskaya of Chicago. All of them train at North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center.

For the Olympic Games qualifying, the top five groups in the all-around, who have not already qualified, will qualify for Tokyo.

Earlier in the championships, Evita Griskenas of Orland Park, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center, and Laura Zeng of Libertyville, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center, both finished in the top 10 in the World Championships all-around final, a first for the USA, and their performances earned two berths to the 2020 Olympic Games for the United States. The last time the United States had two gymnasts qualify to the Olympics was in 1992, when the competitive field was 42. Group rhythmic gymnastics was added to Olympic program in 1996, and the Olympic field for individual gymnastics has been 24 since 2000. The USA also qualified two gymnasts to the 2021 World Games in Birmingham, Ala., by finishing in the top 20 in the all-around final. Also, Zeng became the first American to receive the Longines Prize for Elegance for rhythmic gymnastics when she was awarded the prize at this year’s championships.

The remaining competition schedule is below, and Baku is eight hours ahead of U.S. Eastern time.

Sept. 22, Group – Final, 5 balls and 3 hoops/2 pairs of clubs

  • 2:30 p.m. – 5 Balls
  • 3:15 p.m. – 3 hoops/2 pairs of clubs

U.S. fans can watch the finals via a livestream and tape-delayed broadcast, with a simulcast, on OlympicChannel.com and the Olympic Channel, respectively. NBC Sports and the Olympic Channel: Home of Team USA will have coverage of the finals at FIG Rhythmic Gymnastics World Championships in Baku, Azerbaijan. Fans can catch all the action in spectacular high definition via NBCSports.com/Live or through the NBC Sports app, which is available on the iTunes App Store, Google Play, Windows Store, Roku Channel Store, Apple TV and Amazon Fire.

Sept. 21 – 6 p.m. ET – Group all-around final – Tape-delayed Olympic Channel TV, livestream
Sept. 22 – 6:30 a.m. ET – Group event finals – Livestream
Sept. 22 – 10 p.m. ET – Group event finals – Tape-delayed Olympic Channel TV, livestream

The International Gymnastics Federation’s website has live results and other information.