08/10/14: Great Britain’s women’s gymnastics team - Hannah Whelan, Becky Downie, Claudia Fragapane, Gabby Jupp, Kelly Simm and Ruby Harrold – have placed 6th in the World Championship team final in Nanning, China.
In a high quality final the British team showed great composure on the big stage to produce good routines throughout the competition scoring 168.496 points to finish just short of their record 5th placing from Tokyo in 2011. The team featured three World Championships debutantes in Gabby, Kelly and Claudia all of whom excelled in the final.
Becky Downie summed up the team mood after the event saying: “Overall we can be really pleased. It was an incredible atmosphere out there and we all held it together as a team and put in strong performances. Of course we would like to have been in the medals but we are definitely happy and proud to have a team that is looking so strong and that is progressing so well. The younger girls came in and showed they are more than ready for the major senior competitions and that’s really exciting for GB looking ahead to the next Olympics.”
The title was taken by the USA who comfortably outscored hosts China with Russia placing in bronze.
The British team began their competition on bars, three girls selected to compete on each apparatus and every score counting to the team total. Gabby Jupp returned to the GB team after a long injury absence for these championships and proved her class to get the team off to a great start with a clean routine under the intense pressure of the packed crowd. Bars finalist Ruby Harold followed suit with an innovative display to match Gabby’s 14.066 with European and Commonwealth champion Becky Downie last up gliding effortlessly around the bars showing all her experience to score a brilliant 15.100 and secure Britain’s great start to the final. Double Olympian Hannah Whelan had some difficulties on beam and a hand down on her dismount dented her score, Gabby Jupp followed after a long wait and showed terrific composure with a clean routine scoring 13.833. Becky Downie was again the top scorer with lovely combination of skills and not the slightest sign of a wobble, stylishly performed, for 14.033.
On to floor and Gabby the 2013 British all-around champion showed class and style for 13.966, Ruby Harrold was expressive and explosive, she always gives it everything and scored another good total of 13.700. Commonwealth Champion Claudia Fragapane brought all her trademark expression and dynamism on to the floor with a routine full of energy and high on difficulty to score 14.533. The girls sat in 6th place going on to vault their final apparatus. Kelly Simm had waited all competition to compete and the huge smile as she landed her vault showed she had executed her double twists well to score 14.766. Ruby Harrold was even stronger with the same vault to score 14.800 with Claudia Fragapane the Commonwealth vault champion ending the final for GBR with a step to the side on landing scoring 14.466 to give the team a total of 168.496 points.
The full results can be found here.
The World Championships continue with the men’s all-around competition on live on the BBC Red Button 12.00-15.00 on Thursday which feature Daniel Purvis and Max Whitlock following the withdrawal today of Nile Wilson.