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Ukrainian Maria guides rhythmic gymnasts to Chinese national crown


13:17, April 18, 2013

SHENYANG, Northeast China, April 18 (Xinhua) -- The 30-year-old Maria of Ukraine has been catching the eyes of the audience as her disciples won the team crown at the Chinese rhythmic gymnastics championship which concluded on Wednesday.

The championship was held in Shenyang that will hold the national games later this year, and the hosting provincial team of Liaoning took the team title without any doubt at 29.65 points, almost two points over their closest rivals.

"My teaching method is not different from the Chinese coaches," said Maria, "Maybe I can find some errors, different from what they saw, and I can give athletes some unique visions, so they can reap success in international competitions."

Since her arrival in Liaoning in 2010, the provincial rhythmic gymnastic team has been an undisputed dominating power in China during the past years as her six proteges are all recruited into the Chinese national team.

From once an athlete of the Ukrainian national team to be a foreign coach in China, Maria has been successful in adjusting herself to the new environment and she prefers to be a coach.

"When I was an athlete, I just needed to care about my competition. But now, I have six girls, I have to think about everyone and it became more and more stressful. However, when they win medals, it is like the whole world for me."

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