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World gymnastics championships team rosters missing Olympic gold medalists

Guan Chenchen

TOKYO, JAPAN - AUGUST 03: Chenchen Guan of Team China competes during the Women’s Balance Beam Final on day eleven of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Ariake Gymnastics Centre on August 03, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

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China’s team for the world gymnastics championships is without four of its seven reigning Olympic and world champions, plus past world all-around champion Xiao Ruoteng.

China’s federation said that Xiao, the 2017 World all-around champion, and Tokyo Olympic still rings champion Liu Yang are out due to surgeries following the September 2021 Chinese National Games.

Guan Chenchen, the Olympic balance beam champion, left the sport to attend college, according to the federation.

China’s six-man team is also missing reigning world champions Hu Xuwei (parallel bars, high bar) and Lan Xingyu (rings). It does include reigning world all-around champion Zhang Boheng, who is expected to duel with Olympic all-around champion Daiki Hashimoto of Japan for gold on Nov. 4 in Liverpool, England. Plus Zou Jingyuan, the reigning Olympic champ on parallel bars.

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The teams of six must be cut to five ahead of qualifying, which starts Saturday for the women’s competition and is Monday for men.

China’s women’s team includes its reigning world champion on uneven bars, Wei Xiaoyuan, and 2019 World all-around silver medalist Tang Xijing.

Two other reigning individual Olympic champions are not entered: Brit Max Whitlock (pommel horse), who has not competed since Tokyo but is expected to return later in this Olympic cycle, and South Korean Shin Jea-Hwan (vault).

Russia’s ban due to the war in Ukraine means reigning world all-around champion Angelina Melnikova is absent, as are the four men who won team gold in Tokyo, led by 2019 World all-around champ Nikita Nagornyy.

Other meet headliners include Brazil’s Rebeca Andrade, the Olympic all-around silver medalist, Belgian Nina Derwael (Olympic bars champion) and Americans Shilese Jones, Jordan Chiles and Jade Carey.

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