American Cup 2020: Gymnastics Dates, Schedule, Live Stream and Preview

Gill Clark@@gillclarkyFeatured Columnist IIMarch 6, 2020

USA's Samuel Mikulak gets ready during the horizontal bar event of the apparatus finals at the FIG Artistic Gymnastics World Championships at the Hanns-Martin-Schleyer-Halle in Stuttgart, southern Germany, on October 13, 2019. (Photo by Lionel BONAVENTURE / AFP) (Photo by LIONEL BONAVENTURE/AFP via Getty Images)
LIONEL BONAVENTURE/Getty Images

The 2020 American Cup takes place on Saturday at the Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee and will see a host of the world's top gymnasts in action in one of the sport's most prestigious competitions.

All eyes will be on six-time national champion Sam Mikulak in the men's event. The 2014 American Cup winner faces stiff competition from Ukraine's Oleg Verniaiev, Nestor Abad of Spain and Japan's Daiki Hashimoto. 

Six-time world medallist Morgan Hurd is back after missing out last year and is the favourite to win the women's event, but she will come up against quality opposition in team-mate Kayla DiCello, Canada's Ellie Black and Italy's Giorgia Villa.

        

Date: Saturday, March 7

Time: 11 a.m. local time/12 p.m. ET/5 p.m. GMT.

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TV Info: NBC

Live Stream: NBC Sports Live

      

American Cup Preview

For the first time, the American Cup forms part of qualification for the 2020 Olympic Games in Toyko, meaning there is even more importance than usual on the famous tournament. 

The women's event will see Hurd out to claim the title for the second time in her career. The American Cup will be the 18-year-old's first appearance of 2020, and she has a new floor routine ready to go:

There will be plenty of eyes on Hurd's American team-mate DiCello. The 16-year-old is being tipped to enjoy a breakout season after becoming national junior champion in 2019.

Meanwhile, Saturday's event will see Black back in action after suffering an ankle injury at the world championships in 2019. She made a partial return to competition in February, competing in two events in Calgary.

Black is one of the most consistent and dynamic gymnasts in the world and should be in contention for a medal in what promises to be an exciting battle in the woman's competition.

Mikulak is the headline act in the men's event and landed a record sixth all-around title in August by the largest margin in history to cement his place as America's top male gymnast:

Yet the 27-year-old will need to be at his best to claim gold with a stacked field in attendance in Milwaukee.

Ukraine's Verniaiev is likely to be a serious threat. He won silver in the all-round title at the 2016 Rio Olympics and gold in the parallel bars.

He also finished third at the 2019 world championships less than seven months after undergoing surgery on both ankles.

Here's a look at the 26-year-old's quality:

Abad and Hashimoto are also serious contenders, while America's Shane Wiskus is also in good shape after winning the national vault title in 2019 and finishing second at the Winter Cup Challenge in February.