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Sunday 25 October 2015
Thirty-four is not considered old by any stretch of the imagination, but in the world of gymnastics, where the average age of male competitors is 21, Romania’s Marian Dragulescu is thought of as a veteran of the sport.
Dragulescu is making his return today at the FIG World Artistic Gymnastics Championships at The SSE Hydro in Glasgow. Competing in the men’s Team Competition.
The soon to be 35-year-old originally took up gymnastics to get out of attending karate as a child and was it wasn’t long before he was winning international titles at junior level for his country.
Most famous in his sport for inventing a vault skill - a handspring double tuck with half twist out of it - for those in the know, the Romanian superstar has eight World Championship titles under his belt, nine European titles and three Olympic medals, to name the main accolades.
Having retired several years ago and spent most of that coaching young gymnastics hopefuls, he only decided a few months ago to make a return to competition.
Explaining his comeback Marian said: “I came back to gymnastics because I like it and it’s my first love. I took a long break and it was great, but I missed competition. There is one medal that I want to win, and it’s gold at the Olympic Games. I worked a lot. I began at the end of 2014, but started out training lightly. But I started training seriously in February 2015. The beginning was very hard.”
It’s hoped that his performance here at The SSE Hydro will result in medals and be the springboard to 2016 Olympic gold – the only medal missing from his impressive collection!
Dragulescu is just one of 594 gymnasts from 87 nations all vying to be crowned FIG 2015 World Artistic Gymnastics Champion at The SSE Hydro in Glasgow.
The 10 day event, running 23 October until 1 November 2015, is one of the world’s largest single sport events and beaming to a global audience including China, USA and Russia.
For information and tickets for the 2015 World Gymnastic Championships click here.