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Thread: 2018-19 Japanese Ladies' figure skating

  1. #81
    Bona Fide Member yude's Avatar
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    I've just noticed that the situation of Wakaba and Yuzuru in 2012 (the time he went to Orser) is similar. 17 years old, a medalist at WC, difficult to practice at their local rink, and maybe need some more polish. In Yuzuru's case, official announcement was made in April.

    But we'll wait and see

  2. #82
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    Prospect for Junior Ladies for Next season.

    Mako Yamshita is definitely going to the senior ranks, and very possibly Rika Kihira as well (though nobody can say 100% sure for Rika since she did not earn any spot on her own). They were two leading junior ladies for Japan. So who are going to compete for the next season's JGPS.

    There will be seven events, and Japan got two spots each, 2X7=14 spots.
    Usually seven girls are going to be named with a few of substitutes, and if they are placed 4th or higher, they will get the second spot.
    Last year, the first five of Kihira, Yamashita, Takino, Araki, Matsuoka, Iwano & Yokoi got the second spots, and Kasakake & Matsubara got one spot out of the sub list. Seven medals were won by them, and Kihira made it to the final.
    Besides Kihira & Yamashita, all other girls are predicted to stay on the Junior ranks even though Yokoi will be the final eligible age for the junior.

    Who will be the new comers from the novice ranks?
    Top 6 of the Novice Nationals were 1) Hana Yoshida 2)Rika Tejima 3)Kinayu Yokoi (Yuhana's sister) 4)Nonoka Ise 5) Mana Kawabe 6)Mone Chiba, and unfortunately Yoshida and Tejima will not be age eligible for the next season, and none of the girls 3) to 6) are good enough to be sent to JGB unless they will make a big progress before the early summer. Especially Flip will be the required solo jump for the junior ladies next season, which means that most of top juniors will perform 3Lz+3T/3Lz+3L or 3L+3T/3L+3T for their SP, and none of them, besides Yoshida and Tejima are capable of doing them.
    it is a bit sad especially as we know several amazingly talented Russian girls will come to the junior ranks in addition to the ones they have already.
    On the other hand, Yoshida is very talented, and she beated Alysa Liu who is same age & the top hope for U.S. at the recent competition.

    So who will fill the spots vacated by Kihira and Yamashita?
    I think one of them will be Sui Takeuchi, who became the surprising winner of the recent National high school competition with 3A+3T combo and the big score. She is supposed to be on the third year of the junior ranks, but decided to go to the senior ranks domestically this season probably because she thought that she rather compete at the senior if she was not good enough to be sent to JGP. Though I am not sure that she likes to go back the junior ranks or not, I really hope she will take the opportunity.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZWBWsVGAmu8

    The next in line is Tomoe Kawabata, who finished 6th at the Junior Nationals, and got everything to be a great skater. She is a good looking expressive girl with big impressive jumps. However, she is still inconsistent.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9YdZh-f3iUE

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W8AljvjA_8w&t=293s

    Then Rinka Watanabe (5th at the JN) who is at least more consistent, but basically she is still a tiny girl with a very juniorish style though she has made a big progress since a couple of years ago, last year she was injured. So let's hope that she will make even more progress.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LFnB9unJAwc

    Then Saya Suzuki (9th at the JN) who was great during the last season, but struggled this season due to the injuries, and Wakana Naganawa (10 th at the JN) who is somewhat similar to her club mate Mako with big jumps, but unfortunately she does not have Mako's consistency just yet. Also one more to be mentioned is Sora Maeno who was the surprisingly 3rd place finisher at the National middle school competition after Mako and Rinka.

    This is Saya Suzuki's performance from the last season's senior Nationals.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZbezHjTdlvc

    And personally I am hoping for Yuna Aoki's redemption. Two years and half ago, she made a JGP debut with so much expectation from fans and the federation since she was the Novice champ over Marin, but since then nothing but struggle for her because of injuries and inability to perform +3T. The next season, she can use her 3Lz+3L for her SP, and it will be a big chance for her. At the recent National High school competition, she did a good job.

    The very first one is Yuna Aoki, then followed by Yuna Shiraiwa, Rino Kasakake, Kokoro Iwamoto, Nana Araki & Sui Takeuchi at the National high school competition.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R6fMUcfwkJs

    The next year's Japanese junior ladies are not going to beat Russians, but still very decent team and will compete for the third spot on the podium with two or three Korean ladies.

    And this is Hana Yoshida, remember her name. This girl is NOT going to be age eligible for the junior ranks for the next season.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xup5pH7rvLc

    Her name on the video is spelled "Hanna" and I assume that the uploader, her father prefers that way because it sounds like Westerner's name and probably that sounds cool to him

    This one is Mana Kawabe, who is coming to the junior ranks, but she needs a little more technical contents to be sent to JGP though I do like her expressive style.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EjK8B-Ecd3I

    Then Mone Chiba who shares the coach with Shun Sato who will probably get the mens JGP spot.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QvgFRf_uus0

    Lastly I like to mention the novice champ of the last season, Rion Sumiyoshi.
    She was on the list of sub for JGP, but never sent to one, and the rest of the season was nothing but struggle for her.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H8Ovab50dZ8

    She has long beautiful rims and the tender elegant style, I really hope she can solve her issues and make some improvement till then.

  3. #83
    Can I give you some advice? Skate better. AshWagsFan's Avatar
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    Any retirements going into next season? Such as Rika Hongo, for example? I like her, but I think her time as a contender in Japan has come and gone unfortunately (but not really because there are so many other AMAZING skater in Japan right now!)

  4. #84
    Tripping on the Podium
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    Quote Originally Posted by AshWagsFan View Post
    Any retirements going into next season? Such as Rika Hongo, for example? I like her, but I think her time as a contender in Japan has come and gone unfortunately (but not really because there are so many other AMAZING skater in Japan right now!)
    I think her success in Nationals has prompt her to continue. I wonder how healthy so is at the moment, the last time I heard she was injured I think?

  5. #85
    On the Ice WineHerUp's Avatar
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    Rika is definitely going to have a tough time competing against the other Japanese ladies, but she should continue to compete if that's what makes her happy. You don't need to be at the top to love the sport or to participate in it.

  6. #86
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    Rika H(ongo) is fine, I think. It may appear that she hasn't been doing THAT well internationally for this season. But as far as I can recall, she has got pretty good scores domestically, esp. from her SP (over 70 a couple of times and breaking 200 total). Her jumps (3-3) in short program won't be too much of a problem, as long as she continues to train for those. She may need to work a little more on the long program. Besides Rika actually gets pretty good choreography from Bourne. So for all the above analyses holding Rika back on the possibility of getting GP assignments, I'd think the other way around that Rika will have better chance, given her WS placement is still within top 24 at the moment (and before Marin). I'd be worried more that Yuna won't (not about her skating but the ranking is lower to get her the spots guaranteed)

  7. #87
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    Rika Hongo's WS will still be above Marin Honda even after the scores from 15/16 season were cleared and 16/17 season factored.

    Problem with Rika K is that along with a successful 3A she has to pop another jump - at least internationally. If she does not fix that promptly it will be hard for her to be successful as a senior.

  8. #88
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    Even if Rika (Kihira) can't make a quad, those 3a's will cause a huge splash in seniors. Everyone will be watching her debut.

  9. #89
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    My bold prediction is Rika Kihira not only makes the world team but gets on the podium at worlds next season. I think she will also do well in her GP's and have a complete break-out season!!

  10. #90
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    @bluelutz I am impressed on how much you know about the current and upcoming Japanese skaters and in general about the rules and status.

    That said, I look forward to this upcoming season. Hopefully the Japanese skaters both seniors and juniors will shine more this time internationally. Hopefully they will also get the desired recognition as well through better PCS and GOEs.

  11. #91
    Bona Fide Member yume's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bluelutz View Post
    Prospect for Junior Ladies for Next season.

    Mako Yamshita is definitely going to the senior ranks, and very possibly Rika Kihira as well (though nobody can say 100% sure for Rika since she did not earn any spot on her own). They were two leading junior ladies for Japan. So who are going to compete for the next season's JGPS.

    There will be seven events, and Japan got two spots each, 2X7=14 spots.
    Usually seven girls are going to be named with a few of substitutes, and if they are placed 4th or higher, they will get the second spot.
    Last year, the first five of Kihira, Yamashita, Takino, Araki, Matsuoka, Iwano & Yokoi got the second spots, and Kasakake & Matsubara got one spot out of the sub list. Seven medals were won by them, and Kihira made it to the final.
    Besides Kihira & Yamashita, all other girls are predicted to stay on the Junior ranks even though Yokoi will be the final eligible age for the junior.

    Who will be the new comers from the novice ranks?
    Top 6 of the Novice Nationals were 1) Hana Yoshida 2)Rika Tejima 3)Kinayu Yokoi (Yuhana's sister) 4)Nonoka Ise 5) Mana Kawabe 6)Mone Chiba, and unfortunately Yoshida and Tejima will not be age eligible for the next season, and none of the girls 3) to 6) are good enough to be sent to JGB unless they will make a big progress before the early summer. Especially Flip will be the required solo jump for the junior ladies next season, which means that most of top juniors will perform 3Lz+3T/3Lz+3L or 3L+3T/3L+3T for their SP, and none of them, besides Yoshida and Tejima are capable of doing them.
    it is a bit sad especially as we know several amazingly talented Russian girls will come to the junior ranks in addition to the ones they have already.
    On the other hand, Yoshida is very talented, and she beated Alysa Liu who is same age & the top hope for U.S. at the recent competition.

    So who will fill the spots vacated by Kihira and Yamashita?
    I think one of them will be Sui Takeuchi, who became the surprising winner of the recent National high school competition with 3A+3T combo and the big score. She is supposed to be on the third year of the junior ranks, but decided to go to the senior ranks domestically this season probably because she thought that she rather compete at the senior if she was not good enough to be sent to JGP. Though I am not sure that she likes to go back the junior ranks or not, I really hope she will take the opportunity.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZWBWsVGAmu8

    The next in line is Tomoe Kawabata, who finished 6th at the Junior Nationals, and got everything to be a great skater. She is a good looking expressive girl with big impressive jumps. However, she is still inconsistent.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9YdZh-f3iUE

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W8AljvjA_8w&t=293s

    Then Rinka Watanabe (5th at the JN) who is at least more consistent, but basically she is still a tiny girl with a very juniorish style though she has made a big progress since a couple of years ago, last year she was injured. So let's hope that she will make even more progress.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LFnB9unJAwc

    Then Saya Suzuki (9th at the JN) who was great during the last season, but struggled this season due to the injuries, and Wakana Naganawa (10 th at the JN) who is somewhat similar to her club mate Mako with big jumps, but unfortunately she does not have Mako's consistency just yet.

    This is Saya Suzuki's performance from the last season's senior Nationals.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZbezHjTdlvc

    And personally I am hoping for Yuna Aoki's redemption. Two years and half ago, she made a JGP debut with so much expectation from fans and the federation since she was the Novice champ over Marin, but since then nothing but struggle for her because of injuries and inability to perform +3T. The next season, she can use her 3Lz+3L for her SP, and it will be a big chance for her. At the recent National High school competition, she did a good job.

    The very first one is Yuna Aoki, then followed by Yuna Shiraiwa, Rino Kasakake, Kokoro Iwamoto, Nana Araki & Sui Takeuchi at the National high school competition.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R6fMUcfwkJs

    The next year's Japanese junior ladies are not going to beat Russians, but still very decent team and will compete for the third spot on the podium with two or three Korean ladies.

    And this is Hana Yoshida, remember her name. This girl is NOT going to be age eligible for the junior ranks for the next season.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xup5pH7rvLc

    Her name on the video is spelled "Hanna" and I assume that the uploader, her father prefers that way because it sounds like Westerner's name and probably that sounds cool to him

    This one is Mana Kawabe, who is coming to the junior ranks, but she needs a little more technical contents to be sent to JGP though I do like her expressive style.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EjK8B-Ecd3I

    Then Mone Chiba who shares the coach with Shun Sato who will probably get the mens JGP spot.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QvgFRf_uus0

    Lastly I like to mention the novice champ of the last season, Rion Sumiyoshi.
    She was on the list of sub for JGP, but never sent to one, and the rest of the season was nothing but struggle for her.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H8Ovab50dZ8

    She has long beautiful rims and the tender elegant style, I really hope she can solve her issues and make some improvement till then.
    Thanks for that long and very informative post.
    A shame that Hana Yoshida can't be eligible next season. That little girl is very talented.
    Indeed it's the perfect season for Yuna Aoki to land her 3lz-3lo since it's the flip the solo jump and not the lutz or loop (make me think that the luck is really relevant i juniors. If the lutz was the solo jump in her last junior season, Kaori would have lost a lot of points).
    Honestly, i hope there will be some miracles during summer. At this state, everyone will fight for bronze or 4th place. I see only a Sui Takeuchi and Riko Takino with 3As and consistents challenge Eteri and Panova girls or at least win silver.
    This season 5 girls medaled, it will be harder next season.

  12. #92
    Bona Fide Member yume's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yude View Post
    I've just noticed that the situation of Wakaba and Yuzuru in 2012 (the time he went to Orser) is similar. 17 years old, a medalist at WC, difficult to practice at their local rink, and maybe need some more polish. In Yuzuru's case, official announcement was made in April.

    But we'll wait and see
    I had the same thought yesterday. The same situation. But not the same goal i think

  13. #93
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    Quote Originally Posted by yume View Post
    Indeed it's the perfect season for Yuna Aoki to land her 3lz-3lo since it's the flip the solo jump and not the lutz or loop (make me think that the luck is really relevant i juniors. If the lutz was the solo jump in her last junior season, Kaori would have lost a lot of points).
    Because of the required 3Lz jump, Yuna actually tried switching to 3F-3L in one or two of the domestic competitions. But she may be more comfortable with 3Lz-3L, so I see her alternating between 3F-3L/3F-2T for the SP this season. When she had 3F-2T and could skate a SP without major mistakes, she could score quite well (she usually has not bad scoring on PCS side, in my observation). Yuna also has a very nice 2A-1L-3F in FS, probably in compensation for not be able to do a 3T in combination. BTW, Yuna did confirm that she'll stay one more year in junior.

  14. #94
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    Quote Originally Posted by SnowWhite View Post
    Included in the selection process doesn't mean much. It just means can feds are allowed to pick them. You're right that because there are a lot more singles spots, those medalists have a much better chance, but they aren't guaranteed anything. I'm sure she'll get at least one if she moves up.
    I do believe that the rule was re-written mainly for the pairs since they reduced the pairs' spots to 8 for each GPS, they used to have more spots. Because of that reduction, they could no longer guarantee the spots for the JW pair medalists. However, as the singles maintained the same numbers of spots, one senior GPS spot is pretty much or almost guaranteed for the junior single JW medalists even though the rule does not say that. I think that is the most logical interpretation of this matter.

  15. #95
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    Quote Originally Posted by risingtrot View Post
    @bluelutz I am impressed on how much you know about the current and upcoming Japanese skaters and in general about the rules and status.

    That said, I look forward to this upcoming season. Hopefully the Japanese skaters both seniors and juniors will shine more this time internationally. Hopefully they will also get the desired recognition as well through better PCS and GOEs.
    Thanks
    If you have read that post entirely and watched the videos, you have already known so much about the junior ladies too.
    And I also hope that they will do well for the next season

  16. #96
    Medalist surimi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WineHerUp View Post
    Rika is definitely going to have a tough time competing against the other Japanese ladies, but she should continue to compete if that's what makes her happy. You don't need to be at the top to love the sport or to participate in it.
    Hear, hear. I can't imagine Rika retiring (especially withWorlds taking place in Japan), she's my favourite Japanese lady and I'm not ready for that.

  17. #97
    Bona Fide Member yume's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cohkaix View Post
    Because of the required 3Lz jump, Yuna actually tried switching to 3F-3L in one or two of the domestic competitions. But she may be more comfortable with 3Lz-3L, so I see her alternating between 3F-3L/3F-2T for the SP this season. When she had 3F-2T and could skate a SP without major mistakes, she could score quite well (she usually has not bad scoring on PCS side, in my observation). Yuna also has a very nice 2A-1L-3F in FS, probably in compensation for not be able to do a 3T in combination. BTW, Yuna did confirm that she'll stay one more year in junior.
    Not a bad idea the 2A-1L-3F combo, nice combo and she can repeat lutz and flip i think. But i thouht that she could at least land a 2A-3T? Seems to me that she was able to do it in her first junior season or in novices.

  18. #98
    Tripping on the Podium sakurano's Avatar
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    I wonder where the rumor goes that Wakaba is going to Canada, I wish it was true because she said she really wants to land the 3A perfectly, but is not it just for the summer ?

    For Marin a big change will do him good she really has the weapons to be at the top, good luck to both of them.


    Thank you for your analysis of the Grand Prix Seniors and Juniors places
    I just hope that the JFS will make the right choice on the award of the Grand Prix if he wants more medals because last year only Rika K was in final junior when he could sent Mako and Nana. When Seniors only Satoko and Wakaba were in final.

  19. #99
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    Quote Originally Posted by yume View Post
    Thanks for that long and very informative post.
    A shame that Hana Yoshida can't be eligible next season. That little girl is very talented.
    Indeed it's the perfect season for Yuna Aoki to land her 3lz-3lo since it's the flip the solo jump and not the lutz or loop (make me think that the luck is really relevant i juniors. If the lutz was the solo jump in her last junior season, Kaori would have lost a lot of points).
    Honestly, i hope there will be some miracles during summer. At this state, everyone will fight for bronze or 4th place. I see only a Sui Takeuchi and Riko Takino with 3As and consistents challenge Eteri and Panova girls or at least win silver.
    This season 5 girls medaled, it will be harder next season.
    Though I agree on Kaori's case, I think she really deserved it as she had been on the junior ranks for four seasons. And it really paid off on this year.
    Sui's 3A looks still a bit UR, so she has to work on that before the summer comes, and the package has to be more polished as well to compete with Russians.
    As for Riko, more than 3A, she definitely needs better suited SP and FS though I cannot say the current ones were too bad. Just compared with them, last year's Firebird SP was a great vehicle and showcase for her character/personality on ice. Riko is actually older than Rika and Mako, but she still looks younger and skates juniorish than them probably because she is a very tiny girl. I do not think she should be pushed to be more mature unrealistically to compete with Russians, but at least she should be given programs to maximize her abilities and charms of her personality. Well, the same thing can be said to many other junior girls like Rinka.
    BTW Recently I re-watched Moa Iwano's JGP performance to be blown away. She is super-talented, but I know she is not going anywhere unless her UR issues can be fixed, which are very serious. It's a shame.

    Over all, I think the next year's Japanese junior ladies team are very talented as well and surely I will enjoy watching them competing even though I really cannot predict that they can win over the Russians.

  20. #100
    Bona Fide Member yume's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bluelutz View Post
    BTW Recently I re-watched Moa Iwano's JGP performance to be blown away. She is super-talented, but I know she is not going anywhere unless her UR issues can be fixed, which are very serious. It's a shame.
    .
    Moa's SP this season was a masterpiece. It was hard to believe that she was just 13yo. I hope that she will fix her URs. She can compete in PCS with Russians if she lands her jumps well.
    And it's hard to not call her Mao

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