Anna Bessonova: "Failures don't make me cry"

(translation - Kirilka Nikolova)

The student of the famous Kiev Derygins School Anna Bessonova will soon be 16. Now many people foresee a bright future for this young gymnast who knocked at the door of the world RG. The daughter of the world RG group champion Viktoria Seryh and the virtuous defender of the Kiev football club Vladimir Bessonov is searching for her way to the top all by herself. The Day journalist met the talented gymnast at a break from training and asked her to answer a few questions.

- Anya, the present sports season is a special one and of course this reflects on the preparation of all the athletes who are striving for a berth at the Olympic games. For the RG competition, maximum gymnasts from a country are allowed to participate there. And your rivals are  with many titles , bronze medallist from the last Olympics and ex-world champion Elena Vitrichenko, and the owner of a bronze medal from the world championships '99 in rope final ,Tamara Erofeeva. Do you feel a psychological pressure?

- A time comes when somebody puts a pressure on the favorites, but I do not think about this at all, I continue to do my job with a double energy. Of course, Lena and Toma are more experienced than me, but it motivates me to catch up with them and become better than them. I think that the answer to the question who is more ready for Sidney will be given at the Deruigins Cup (It really showed in the future...-LV).

- But if a disappointment is waiting for you and you remain at home, how will you feel? And generally, how do you meet failures? I know many of your friends-gymnasts cry...

- This reminds me the question what do I do when the judges give me an unfair score, when they give me a lower mark. I do nothing. This is out of the area of my competency. When I go to the floor, I must perform my routine cleanly. And if the judges give me a low mark, it means, I made a mistake. If I do not go to Sidney, it means that I did not finish something completely, I missed something. I will brace myself up and will start working again.

- Many gymnasts who want to win high places at international competitions, as a rule, try to surprise the judges and the audience with original solutions and new programs. Probably you prepared something too...

-Yes, I and my coach Irina Ivanovna prepared new routines with rope, hoop and ball. The characteristic for all of them is the dominant classical music, the strictness of the lines, the clarity and the crispness of every "pas". Of course I will present them to the judgment of the specialists at the Kiev tournament. I like them very much and I believe in these routines. And this means that I will perform them with inspiration.

-The coach is a coach, but your mother was in the past a wonderful gymnast, and although now she performs mostly clerical duties at the Committee for Youth Politics, Sport and Tourism, maybe she can give many advices to her daughter in her new program. By the way, did your father see your program and how did he evaluate it?

-Of course, my mother helps me with advices, shows me my mistakes. But my father
always likes everything and says that the general impression is wondeful.

- Usually, the gymnasts your age have compositions which are cheerful, happy, childish. And yours, even two years ago, were already pretty serious. How can you explain this?

- Very simply, I passed to the senior category where the requirements and the criteria are different. As I had to prepare myself for the world championships in Japan, I very quickly grew by several steps.

- Who is your favourite gymnast?

- Alexandra Timoshenko. Although I have never seen her perform live, I watch her tapes very often. I admire her expressiveness, elegance. Irina Ivanovna gives her often as an example to us all. Because of her many girls have came to practice this sport here.

- But you decided to become a gymnast by yourself. It is astonishing but your mother was against that. Usually everything is on the contrary.

- Yes, my mother took me to the choreographic class, but I do not know why myself, since the age of 5 I had the confidence that I will become a rhythmic gymnast. I was insisting on that and my mother had finally to surrender.

- What is your opinion of the choreography, is it necessary?

- Maybe I was influenced by the chorographical class I attended. I loved it and and I understood it. This the base of all bases, like the alphabet in the language. That is why I love the classical ballet, the professional dance. When we have spare time, my mother and me always go to the theater, to concerts.

- Do you go to football games to support your fathers club CSKA?

-To speak honestly, I am not a fan of the football. I like to watch figure skating, tennis. I think that my mother and me did not miss the football even when my father was performing for the Dynamo Kiev. And my brother did not take up football, he is practicing tennis and training at the Barcelona tennis academy.

-And how do you take a rest?

- I read love novels, watch TV, search in the Internet for RG sites, try to find what is new, what new costumes and hair styles have the leading gymnasts.

- Is your favourite apparatus the ball? Your performances with it are great!

- You could not guess. From childhood I loved to play with the rope and with "rezinka" (elastic material for jumping, used by small girls for play - KN). This love continues until now. With the rope you can create many things, to perform any kind of elements, to improvise!

by Alexander Goncharuk, The Day, March 3, 2000

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