Russians, seeking their fourth straight Olympic title, scored 28.375
points for their routine with five balls Thursday. That was .275 points
better than Italy, which has won the last three world championships.
Belarus was third.
Qualifying continues Friday with three ribbons and two hoops. The top eight teams advance to Sunday’s final.
Thursday, Daria Dmitrieva upstaged defending Olympic champion Evgeniya
Kanaeva as Russia went 1-2 in individual qualifying.