England’s Max Whitlock led the medal charge once again on the first day of the apparatus finals at the 2014 Commonwealth Games taking the floor gold and pommel silver to add his all-around and team golds.
The biggest cheer of the day came for Scotland’s Daniel Keatings who took the pommel gold in one of the most eagerly awaited finals of the whole Games, much to the delight of the home crowd.
Becky Downie showed her superiority on bars, the European Champion excelling for her second gold of the Games with Ruby Harrold in bronze to give her the full set of medals, whilst Claudia Fragapane took the vault gold to add to her all-around and team gold’s and continue a memorable and magnificent first Games for her.
To complete the medal haul Dan Purvis sent the crowd home happy by taking brilliant bronze in the rings competition, the final event of a memorable day for the Home Nations in the Hydro.
Gold medal reaction..
Max Whitlock summed up another superb day saying: “I’m very happy and very tired now. The adrenaline and the atmosphere kick in when you are competing and that’s what drives you to go out there and perform. I was hopeful of a successful Games coming in to this but to achieve what I have so far is beyond what I expected. I just focus on doing the routines I’ve trained so hard for and I’m really happy they are paying off for me and Team England.”
Dan Keatings said after: “Wow! I just feel incredible. I wanted to go out there early, put a good routine in and put pressure on the other boys. It was a truly world class field so to come out on top feels amazing. Hearing the crowd singing the anthem will last with me forever, incredible.”
Becky Downie had targeted bars gold and was happy to have produced on the day saying: “I’m pretty pleased with the routine and happy to have won the gold. I knew coming in to these Games that bars would be one to focus on individually and am happy to have done the job for Team England. The whole team are doing so well and to continue that and contribute gold is brilliant.”
Claudia has been in dream world all week and was again ecstatic with her performance saying: “I had to compose myself today after an amazing evening winning the all-around. I was still buzzing when I woke up this morning but as soon as I stood at the start of the vault run I was calm. To win another gold just doesn’t seem real, it’s all so incredible. I am always determined to do my best, every day in the gym I work as hard as I can to be a better gymnast and it’s paying off.”
The story of the competitions..
Clinton Purnell of Wales had the honour of leading the home nation gymnasts competition and executed a fine floor display scoring 14.366 to place 5th to continue what has been a hugely successful week for him and his Welsh team. Kristian Thomas of England followed and did extremely well to improvise a roll out of his second tumble pass having temporarily lost his bearings, he regrouped to post a score of 13.366.
Max Whitlock topped qualification and was unbeatable again, as he has been all Games, his phenomenal twisting tumbles and trademark huge breakdance like flair skills taking him to 15.533 points for his third gold medal to begin the day. The loudest cheer came for Scotland’s Dan Keatings who smiled his way through his cleanly executed well-controlled routine to score him 14.533 and take 4th.
Scotland's Emma White has been reveling in the home crowd support all week and again they willed her down the vault run. Her first pass cleanly landed for 13.800 points and second vault with a small step forward to score 13.300 for a total average of 13.550 and 8th place. Kelly Simm (ENG) has been enjoying every moment of these Games and took that enthusiasm into her vaulting which was full of confidence and well performed, the first pass scoring 14.633 and the second 13.766 for a total of 14.199 and 5th place.
English all-around and team champion Claudia Fragapane is a pocket rocket on the vault, her small powerful frame giving her huge lift of the vault. Her first routine was well controlled with small hop on landing scoring her 14.766, and her second also superbly executed to score 14.500 for an average of 14.633 and her third gold medal of the Games.
The men’s pommel horse final was one of the most highly anticipated of the whole Games.
Clinton Purnell of Wales began the event with a clean routine, muscling through this dismount to score 12.966.
Daniel Keatings of Scotland was superb, stepping up his routine for the big event his circling round the pommel smooth and steady, his work to handstand mid routine clean and crisp and his dismount near perfect for a brilliant score of 16.058 and the Commonwealth Games gold medal.
Next up was Jac Davies of Wales who excelled in the spotlight to compete an outstanding clean well controlled routine for a great score of 14.800 and a superb 4th place.
Louis Smith (ENG) took to the pommel with determination and the eyes of the Hydro on him. His work was superb, quick skillful hands flicking him round the pommel, rising up to handstand and then back into circle moves seamlessly and then came the dismount, he fought superbly to stay upright and then had to rescue his landing and did so well, but this reduced his score to 14.966 and bronze.
Dan Purvis progressed quietly in to the final but made his mark with an outstanding display in the heat of the medal battle scoring 14.516 for 5th.
Max Whitlock of England was the last to compete, his range of skills and execution superb, a small struggle midway was dealt with by sheer determination as he continued to perform a hugely difficult routine with a superb dismount to score 15.966 and take his first silver medal.
Lizzie Beddoe of Wales opened the bars routines; she had some difficultly at the start of her routine losing momentum and falling on her first release move but composed herself well to score 11.633.
European Champions Becky Downie of England knew the job she had to do and the skill level she had. Her routine was controlled, composed and brilliantly executed as she flew from bar to bar, her dismount well landed with a couple of tiny steps for 14.666 and the gold.
Raer Theaker did well just to compete in the bars final, an injury earlier in the week limiting her routines but she showed great desire, pride and determination to go out there and perform, scoring 8.333.
Ruby Harrold was last up for England with a brilliant routine, packed with difficult release moves from the low to high bar, the crowd gasping as she flew through the air, her landing was solid and her score 14.366 for the bronze medal .
Scotland’s Dan Purvis led the way on rings with a master class of power, the home crowd willing him on as he held his positions mid-air, one small hop on landing gave him a score of 14.766 to set the standard and take the bronze.
Clinton Purnell from Wales followed in similar fashion, proving once again that he is capable of routines that put him right up in the medal hunt amongst the Olympians around him scoring 14.533 for 6th. Nile Wilson has shone in her first competition as a senior and the Englishman again showed composure beyond his 18 years to complete a clean difficult routine for 14.466 points and 7th. Max Whitlock was competing in his third final of the day but showed few signs of tiredness as he performed a tidy routine for 14.566 and 5th spot.
The gymnastics competitions end with the remaining apparatus finals on Friday.