Olympic Gymnastics 2012: Biggest Threats to Gabby Douglas in Women's All-Around

Ian HanfordFeatured ColumnistAugust 2, 2012

LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 31:  Gabrielle Douglas of the United States performs on the floor exercise as her team cheers her on in the Artistic Gymnastics Women's Team final on Day 4 of the London 2012 Olympic Games at North Greenwich Arena on July 31, 2012 in London, England.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Gabby Douglas is the favorite to win the gold medal in Thursday's women's all-around final, but her road isn't completely clear. The field is littered with talented gymnasts, and a few could challenge her for first place.

The women's all-around final seems odd without Jordyn Wieber's name in the mix, but there are still gymnasts that you should keep a keen eye on.

Let's take a look at three gymnasts who will push Douglas for the right to be called the world's best female gymnast.


Viktoria Komova, Russia

Komova is just 17 years old and is an elite talent with a balanced repertoire.

She thrives on the balance beam and uneven bars, but Komova is also graceful in her floor exercise. She hasn't been consistent on the floor, but she's capable of turning in a well-timed performance.

Douglas can match her on the balance beam, but Komova's ability on the bars will keep this one close. She's one of the world's brightest young talents.

It would be a shock if she didn't win a medal, and don't rule out gold.


Aly Raisman

Team USA's surprise participant is Raisman. It was supposed to be Wieber.

In the qualification rounds, Raisman was flawless in her floor exercise, turned in a solid performance on the balance beam and held her own on the uneven bars. She was the second overall qualifier, and she rides that momentum into Thursday's final.

Raisman wasn't necessarily supposed to be here, but that will work to her advantage. She is a very talented underdog, and she will keep the pressure on her American teammate.


Aliya Mustafina

Mustafina is the fifth overall qualifier, and she is Komova's very talented teammate. She excels on the uneven bars, and that could make her an interesting dark-horse candidate.

Douglas is a better overall performer, but Mustafina is consistent. The bars are the part of her routine that really sticks out, but she is no slouch in the other events. She had a few slip-ups in prior rounds and could have had a better score.

She's the least likely to threaten Douglas, but she will make things interesting. Wieber's failure to qualify taught us to expect the unexpected.