Amelie Morgan fell just short of adding to her Youth Olympic medal tally following a packed day of artistic gymnastics finals at Buenos Aires 2018.
The 15-year-old finished fourth on the uneven bars and sixth on vault, a day after collecting silver in the women’s all-around in Argentina. Elsewhere, teammate Adam Tobin ended the first day of individual finals seventh on floor and ninth on the pommel.
Both Team GB gymnasts have two finals left with Morgan still to go on floor and beam on Monday while Tobin will contest the rings final tomorrow [Sunday] and parallel bars the day after.
Morgan’s 13.400 on the uneven bars was enough to lie second behind Russia’s Kseniia Klimenko, who went on to win gold, but with five gymnasts still to compete the Brit was eventually pushed out of the medals by the final two competitors as Giorgia Villa of Italy and China’s Xijing Tang won silver and bronze respectively.
In the vault final, Morgan couldn’t match her qualification score of 13.449, which would have given her another fourth place, with 13.319 good enough for sixth as Villa won her second gold of the Games following yesterday’s all-around.
“I’m really happy with the bars tonight,” said Morgan. “That was one of my best routines and I couldn’t have asked for much more. Especially on bars this field is incredibly talented and they’re hard competitors.
“The vault didn’t quite go to plan but I’m focused on my last two finals. I’ve got a day off tomorrow so I’m going to recover well and get lots of sleep before the finals.”
For Tobin, early landing errors in his floor routine ruled him out of the medals with 13.233 placing him seventh. On pommel, the 17-year-old was one of a number of gymnasts who had to restart their routine following mistakes.
Tobin finished with 9.533 for ninth, with China’s Dehang Yin scoring 13.900 for gold.
“You don’t want to be the only one making mistakes so it does make me feel a little bit better, although I know it’s not nice to say that. I think my mindset wasn’t quite right coming from having a poor floor routine. My landings weren’t great on floor and my tumbles were a bit scruffy.”
Annabel Denton finished the women’s modern pentathlon in eighth position, ending what has proved to be a brilliant week for the young Brit. Denton, the youngest in the field at 15 years old, was sitting in fifth position going into the laser run, but fell three places to end the competition in eighth.
She had previously been in joint third position after the fencing ranking round on day one. Denton then produced the ninth best time in the pool and headed into the laser run in fifth.
“This has been the greatest performance of my life – I’m so happy right now,” said Denton. “I fenced incredibly for me – I was so surprised and then followed it up with a great swim. I felt quite tired before the laser run, but I gave it my all and I’m so happy to come in in eighth place.
“There are 18-year-olds in the field that were likely to have more endurance than me, but hopefully in three years’ time, I will be up there with them and able to compete.
Jack Whitaker brought his Youth Olympic Games to a close at Club Hipico as he ended the second and final day in 22nd place.
It was always going to be a tall order for Whitaker after day one saw 13 riders go clear and he and his horse, LV Chance Luck, knocked one fence down, incurring four penalty points. His second run would see a further two fences knocked down incurring eight penalty points, 12 overall, for his final position.
There were five riders who went to a jump-off after two clear rounds but in the end it would be Italian rider Giacomo Casadei who won gold with Omar Almarzooqi (UAE) in second and Pedro Espinosa (Honduras) in third.
Team GB teed off in the first round of three of the golf mixed team event at the Hurlingham Club. Paired together for the first time, Lily May Humphreys and Joe Pagdin impressed with a round of -6 to find themselves well in the mix after day one, tied for sixth along with Denmark, Netherlands and Japan, with a dominant Italy leading the way on -13.
The cycling combined got underway, with British pair Harriet Harnden and Anna McGorum sitting in eighth position after today’s women’s team time trial, clocking 9:55, scoring 20 points on day one.
Sean Flynn and Harry Birchill stopped the clock in 10th position in the men’s event with a time of 8:55 which gave them 10 points.
Four races will now follow over the next four days: road race, cross-country eliminator, cross-country short circuit and criterium, and points will be handed out to the top 16 finishes in each event. The final standings are decided by whichever team has the most points at the end of the five days.
Speaking at the end, both pairs were pleased with the day’s racing. “I’m really happy with eighth place in the team time trial,” said Harnden.
“Anna and I have only done a couple of time trials together before, so it was a good experience. As a pair, we’ve done a lot more road racing than time trialling, so we have a fair idea of what we’re trying to aim to do seeing as we’ve ridden on the course a few times.
Flynn and Birchill had gone out first this morning in the men’s event and were pleased to finally be out on the road. “It went pretty good today, I felt quite fresh out there,” said Birchill. “We tried to push as hard as we could, communicate well and stay together, and I think we did that.”
It was a mixed day on the archery range for Team GB’s competitors, playing as part of the mixed international team round of 16. Alyssia Tromans-Ansell, playing with Reza Shabani from Iran, enjoyed an impressive 5-1 victory over their opponents from India/South Africa.
It was a tougher competition for Dan Thompson and his playing partner, the Korean Yeryeong Son, as despite matching their Dutch/Russian opponents after two sets, couldn’t continue that form and ultimately lost 6-2.
Image credit: Team GB/Lumix UK
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