Illia Kovtun: Difference between revisions


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{{Medal|Sport| Men’s [[artistic gymnastics]] }}

{{MedalCountry| {{UKR}} }}

{{MedalCountry| {{UKR}} }}


{{MedalSport| Men’s [[artistic gymnastics]] }}

{{MedalCompetition| [[World Artistic Gymnastics Championships|World Championships]] }}

{{MedalCompetition| [[World Artistic Gymnastics Championships|World Championships]] }}

{{MedalSilver| [[2023 World Artistic Gymnastics Championships|2023 Antwerp]] | All-Around }}

{{MedalSilver| [[2023 World Artistic Gymnastics Championships|2023 Antwerp]] | All-Around }}

Ukrainian artistic gymnast (born 2003)

Illia Yuriiovych Kovtun (Ukrainian: Ілля Юрійович Ковтун; born 10 August 2003)[1] is a Ukrainian artistic gymnast who competed at the 2020 Olympic Games. He is the 2023 World all-around silver medalist and 2021 World all-around bronze medalist. At the European Championships he is the 2023 European champion on parallel bars as well as a one-time silver medalist (2022 parallel bars) and a three-time bronze medalist (2021 and 2023 all-around, 2023 horizontal bar). Additionally he is a two-time junior world championships medalist.

Junior gymnastics career[edit]
2018[edit]
Kovtun competed at the 2018 European Championships where he helped Ukraine finish fifth in the team finals. Individually he won the junior title on the parallel bars.[2]

2019[edit]
Kovtun competed at the Stella Zakharova Cup where he placed first in the junior all-around division. He was selected to represent Ukraine at the inaugural junior World Championships alongside Nazar Chepurnyi and Volodymyr Kostiuk. Together they finished second as a team behind Japan. Individually he won the bronze medal in the all-around behind Shinnosuke Oka and Ryosuke Doi. During event finals Kovtun finished sixth on pommel horse and fourth on parallel bars.[1][3][4]
Kovtun next competed at the European Youth Olympic Festival in Baku, Azerbaijan, again alongside Chepurnyi and Kostiuk. They won gold as a team and individually Kovtun won gold in the all-around and on parallel bars and horizontal bar; additionally he won silver on floor exercise behind Chepurnyi.

IntroductionPommel horseParallel barsHorizontal bar
2020[edit]
Kovtun competed at the 2020 European Championships held in Mersin, Turkey. While there he led the Ukrainian junior team to gold.[5][6] Individually he won gold in the all-around and on pommel horse, rings, and parallel bars.[6][7] He also won the silver medal in the junior vault event.[8]

Senior gymnastics career[edit]
2021[edit]
Kovtun turned senior in 2021 and made his senior international debut at the 2021 European Championships. He won the bronze medal in the all-around competition behind Nikita Nagornyy and David Belyavskiy. Kovtun next competed at the World Challenge Cups in Varna and Cairo; he picked up five gold medals and two bronze medals.

Kovtun at the 2020 Olympic Games
Due to the postponement of the 2020 Summer Olympics, Kovtun was age-eligible to compete at them in 2021. He was named to represent Ukraine alongside Petro Pakhnyuk, Ihor Radivilov, and Yevhen Yudenkov. They qualified to the team final and individually Kovtun qualified to the all-around final. During the team final Kovtun competed on floor exercise, pommel horse, parallel bars, and high bar, contributing towards Ukraine’s seventh-place finish. During the all-around final Kovtun finished 11th.
After the Olympic Games Kovtun returned to competition at the World Challenge Cups in Koper and Mersin where he picked up an additional gold and bronze medal and three silvers. He ended up winning the series titles on floor exercise, pommel horse, and parallel bars.[9]
In October Kovtun competed at the 2021 World Championships where he won the all-around bronze medal behind Zhang Boheng and Hashimoto Daiki. Additionally he placed seventh on horizontal bar. He next competed at the Arthur Gander Memorial where he placed third behind Yul Moldauer and Nikita Nagornyy. Kovtun then competed at the Swiss Cup where he was partnered with Yelyzaveta Hubareva; they finished second behind the Russian team of Nagornyy and Angelina Melnikova.[10]
In December Kovtun was awarded with the title Merited Master of Sports of Ukraine.[11]

2022[edit]
Kovtun competed at the Cottbus World Cup in February. On the first day of qualifications Russia launched a full-scale invasion of Kovtun’s home country of Ukraine. Despite news of the ongoing war, Kovtun won gold on parallel bars and silver on pommel horse and finished fourth and fifth on floor exercise and horizontal bar respectively.[12] Kovtun next competed at the Doha World Cup where he qualified to all six apparatus event finals. On the first day of event finals he won silver on floor exercise behind Artem Dolgopyat and placed fifth and sixth on pommel horse and rings respectively. On the second day of event finals he won gold on parallel bars and bronze on horizontal bar behind Alexander Myakinin and Robert Tvorogal and placed sixth on vault.[13]
Kovtun became “an unwitting symbol of resilience and dignity”[14] when, during the medal ceremony for the parallel bars, Russian gymnast and bronze medalist Ivan Kuliak taunted Kovtun by wearing a Z on his chest – a symbol of support for the Russian invasion. Kovtun did not visibly react to the taunt, and Kuliak was heavily sanctioned by the International Gymnastics Federation.[15][16] At the Cairo World Cup Kovtun won his third consecutive gold medal on the parallel bars.[17] Kovtun finished the World Cup circuit competing at the Baku World Cup. He won his fourth consecutive gold medal on the parallel bars, completing a clean sweep of the titles. Additionally he won the bronze on horizontal bar.[18]
Due to the ongoing war, Kovtun did not return to Ukraine. His team was given shelter by gymnastics clubs in European countries where they could train in exile and prepare for future competitions. For the first couple of days, the refugees were hosted by Blau-Weiss Buchholz, a German club,[19] before they spent the next two months in the Palestra Ginnastica Ferrara in Italy.[20][21] From their temporary training places the team participated in national and international competitions. Kovtun competed several times for the Monaco gymnastics club in the French league.[22] In the middle of June 2022, the group of about 15 people including coaches and few family members moved to a gym in Croatia.

Kovtun and his teamHorizontal barStill ringsCleaning up the gym hallKovtun in a training session in the Italian exile (more photos)
In August Kovtun competed at the European Championships. On the first day of competition he finished eleventh in the all-around and helped Ukraine finish ninth as a team during qualifications. Although they didn’t qualify for the team final they qualified a whole team to compete at the upcoming World Championships. Individually Kovtun qualified for the floor exercise and parallel bars finals. During the floor exercise final Kovtun finished fifth. During the parallel bars final Kovtun recorded the highest score, a 15.333, but lost a tie-break to Joe Fraser of the United Kingdom and took home the silver medal.[23] At the Szombathely Challenge Cup Kovtun earned gold on both floor exercise and parallel bars.[24]

Floor exerciseParallel barsVaultParallel bars medal podium
In late October through early November Kovtun competed at the World Championships. While there he qualified to the all-around final and was the first reserve for the parallel bars final. He finished seventh in the all-around.[25] He next competed at the Arthur Gander Memorial where he placed first in the four-event all-around despite a rough start on floor exercise.[26]

2023[edit]
Kovtun competed at the World Cups in Cottbus, Doha, and Baku. He won gold on parallel bars in Cottbus and Doha and silver in Baku behind Carlos Yulo. Additionally he won silver on floor exercise behind Milad Karimi in Baku. At the European Championships Kovtun became the European Champion on parallel bars, which is his first major title in his senior career. Additionally he won bronze in the all-around and on horizontal bar.[27][28][29] At the Cairo World Cup Kovtun won gold on floor exercise, parallel bars, and horizontal bar and picked up bronze on pommel horse.[30]
In October Kovtun competed at the 2023 World Championships alongside Nazar Chepurnyi, Igor Radivilov, Radomyr Stelmakh, and Oleg Verniaiev. During qualifications they finished twelfth as a team and qualified a full team to the 2024 Olympic Games. Individually Kovtun qualified to the all-around and parallel bar finals. During the all-around final Kovtun finished second behind reigning World Champion Daiki Hashimoto.[31] In winning the silver medal, Kovtun set the record for Ukraine’s highest all-around placement at the World Championships, beating the record Verniaiev set in 2019 and Kovtun himself matched in 2021.[32] During the parallel bars final Kovtun finished fifth.

Competitive history[edit]
Kovtun and the Ukrainian delegation at the 2019 Junior World Championships

Eponymous skills[edit]
Kovtun has one skill named after him on parallel bars.

Apparatus

Name

Description

Difficulty

Added to Code of Points

Parallel Bars

Kovtun

Back toss from upper arm with quarter turn to one rail

C (0.3)

2021 World Cup Koper

References[edit]

^ a b “2019 Junior World Artistic Gymnastics Championships”. International Gymnastics Federation.

^ “2018 European Championships Men’s Results”. The Gymternet. 13 August 2018.

^ “Oka wins all-around title as Japan dominate opening day of Artistic Gymnastics Junior World Championships”. InsideTheGames.biz. 27 June 2019. Archived from the original on 17 June 2020.

^ “GYMNASTICS: Russia and Japan shine in first World Junior Championships; di Cello wins gold on Vault”. The Sports Examiner. 30 June 2019. Archived from the original on 22 June 2020.

^ Berkeley, Geoff (9 December 2020). “Ukraine claim junior team title on first day of European Men’s Artistic Gymnastics Championships”. InsideTheGames.biz. Archived from the original on 9 December 2020. Retrieved 13 December 2020.

^ a b “Ukraine crowned junior European team Champions!”. European Gymnastics. 9 December 2020. Archived from the original on 9 December 2020. Retrieved 9 December 2020.

^ Berkeley, Geoff (11 December 2020). “Kovtun wins junior all-around gold at European Men’s Artistic Gymnastics Championships”. InsideTheGames.biz. Archived from the original on 11 December 2020. Retrieved 13 December 2020.

^ Berkeley, Geoff (13 December 2020). “Turkey end home European Men’s Artistic Gymnastics Championships with historic double”. InsideTheGames.biz. Archived from the original on 13 December 2020. Retrieved 13 December 2020.

^ “Kovtun and Derek triumph with World Challenge Cup Series titles”. International Gymnastics Federation. 15 September 2021.

^ “Angelina Melnikova and Nikita Nagornyy lead Russian Federation to Swiss Cup win in Zurich”. International Olympic Committee. 7 November 2021.

^ “Черкаський гімнаст став “Заслуженим майстром спорту України””. 6 December 2021.

^ “Two titles for Ukrainian gymnasts as Cottbus kicks off World Cup season”. International Gymnastics Federation. 28 February 2022.

^ “Illia Kovtun wins gold, silver and bronze at the World Cup in Doha”. International Gymnastics Federation. 7 March 2022.

^ “Ukraine’s Illia Kovtun: ‘God is with us and the truth is on our side'”. 10 March 2022.

^ “Russian gymnast Ivan Kuliak shows pro-war ‘z’ symbol on podium”. ESPN. 7 March 2022.

^ “Incident at the Doha World Cup – FIG statement”. International Gymnastics Federation. 6 March 2022.

^ “Armenia and Ukraine win double gold at World Cup of Cairo”. International Gymnast. 20 March 2022.

^ “Kovtun’s fourth consecutive title leads Ukraine to distinction at Baku World Cup”. International Gymnastics Federation. 4 April 2022.

^ Sander, Oliver (6 April 2022). “Ukrainische Spitzenturner zu Gast bei Blau-Weiss Buchholz”. Kreiszeitung Wochenblatt. Retrieved 22 June 2022.

^ “Ucraina: Ferrara ospita gli atleti di ginnastica artistica”. Ansa.it Emilia Romagna. ANSA.it. 8 April 2022. Retrieved 22 June 2022.

^ Irene, Righetti (19 April 2022). “Illia Kovtun, ginnasta ucraino, si racconta: “Lo sport deve unirci”. Gazzetta. Retrieved 22 June 2022.

^ Jérémie, Bernigole-Stroh (2 May 2022). “TOP 12 : QUALIFIÉE, L’ETOILE DE MONACO AFFRONTERA ANTIBES EN DEMI-FINALE !”. Codesport Monaco.

^ “Dolgopyat, Merdinyan, Petrounias, Jarman, Fraser and Georgiou crowned apparatus Champions at #Munich2022”. European Gymnastics. 21 August 2022.

^ “Hungary, Japan, Canada sizzle at Szombathely World Challenge Cup”. International Gymnastics Federation. 3 October 2022.

^ “2022 World Championships Men’s Results”. The Gymternet. 9 November 2022.

^ “D’Amato, Kovtun Win Memorial Gander Titles”. The Gymternet. 23 November 2022.

^ “Gymnasts from seven nations snag titles at Cottbus World Cup”. International Gymnastics Federation. 27 February 2023.

^ “Maneca-Voinea mania takes hold in Doha after Romanian’s double gold debut”. International Gymnastics Federation. 6 March 2023.

^ “French gymnasts, Carlos Yulo rise triumphant at Baku World Cup”. International Gymnastics Federation. 13 March 2023.

^ “Kovtun, Roberson adorned in gold at Cairo World Cup”. International Gymnastics Federation. 2 May 2023.

^ “Japan’s Hashimoto wins second all-around world title”. Reuters. 5 October 2023.

^ “The MAG Record Breakers in Antwerp”. The Gymternet. 13 October 2023.

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