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Romania brings back veteran gymnastics coaches for Olympics

December 8, 2015

BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) — Romania is bringing back two veteran coaches to help the women’s gymnastics team qualify for next year’s Olympics in Rio de Janeiro after a poor showing at the world championships by the traditional powerhouse.

Romanian Olympic official Ana Pascu said Tuesday that Mariana Bitang and Octavian Bellu, two of the country’s best-known gymnastics figures, would be reinstated as coaches. The decision comes after Romania’s women’s team failed to reach the final of the world championships in Glasgow, finishing in 13th place. That means they have to qualify for the Olympics through a test event in April.

Bellu was the main trainer for Romania’s women from 1990 to 2005, with Bitang joining her in 1993. They coached the team through four Olympics, 12 world championships and nine European championships.

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