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Italy concluded an electrifying European Gymnastics Championships in the midst of an enthusiastic home audience, reclaiming their women's team title from reigning champions Great Britain at the Fiera Rimini arena on Sunday 5 May.

Women's European Gymnastics Championships

The host nations team, comprising Elisa Iorio, Alice D'Amato, Manila Esposito, and Angela Andreoli, managed to achieve a cumulative score of 164.162 across all four apparatus in the all-around competition, despite the absence of the injured Asia D'Amato, who sustained a leg injury on the first day and had to be assisted off.

In contrast, Great Britain secured the silver medal, led by Becky Downie MBE, who replicated her achievement from the 2010 team, alongside Georgia-Mae Fenton, Abi Martin, Ruby Evans, and Alice Kinsella. This quintet amassed a score of 162.162. Speaking after the event, Dowie hailed her fellow colleagues.

"I'm super proud of the team today and personally so happy to have put the big routine out there and get the score for these amazing girls," she said. "We couldn’t have done much more as a team today, to see how Abi and Ruby in particular performed in their first Europeans was incredible. It feels like we’re in a really good place as a team and I’m excited to see what might come this summer."

The British squad, have have lost head coach David Kenwright, kicked off the competition on the vault alongside Italy, buoyed by a fervent home crowd. Mae Fenton set the tone with a flawless opening vault, earning a score of 13.666. Kinsella followed suit stylishly, garnering 14.1 points, while Ruby Evans solidified the team's strong start with a score of 14.066.

Transitioning to the uneven bars, Kinsella executed her routine adeptly, earning an impressive 13.766 points. Fenton, fresh off her European bars bronze win, showcased her skills once more, matching Kinsella's score of 13.766. Downie then tackled a highly challenging routine, reaping the rewards with a remarkable performance, contributing a substantial 14.633 points to the team's total.

Meanwhile, the battle for the last qualifying position unfolded between Romania and France, with the hosts of the upcoming Olympic Games in Paris 2024, scheduled to begin on 26 July, emerging victorious with a score of 158.796 against Romania's 156.397.

Gymnastic star Downie MBE secured silver for Great Britain. GETTY IMAGES
Gymnastic star Downie MBE secured silver for Great Britain. GETTY IMAGES


During the earlier junior apparatus finals, Izzy Priestley showcased two excellent vault routines, demonstrating controlled landings to earn scores of 12.933 and 12.5, securing 6th place. 

In the bars final, Ellie Lewis executed her routine smoothly, earning a score of 11.733 and finishing in 8th place, while Shantae-Eve Amankwaah exhibited high-difficulty skills and a clean dismount to score 12.6, placing 5th.

In the floor exercise, Shantae-Eve delivered a stunning performance that captivated the audience, earning her a score of 12.4 and securing 6th place.

Amankwaah impressed in the juniors at the tournament in Rimini, Italy. GETTY IMAGES
Amankwaah impressed in the juniors at the tournament in Rimini, Italy. GETTY IMAGES

Rhythmic Gymnastics Asian Championships

The Senior & Junior Rhythmic Gymnastics Asian Championships wrapped up its Individual All-Around and Group All-Around competitions, honouring the top rhythmic gymnasts in Asia. Hosted in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, the event featured mesmerising performances and united athletes from various corners of the continent.

Elzhana Taniyeva of Kazakhstan clinched the gold medal in the Senior Individual All-Around, amassing an impressive 133.400 points with routines that displayed a seamless fusion of precision, grace, and artistry. Takhmina Ikromova from Uzbekistan secured the silver medal with a score of 130.150 points, demonstrating exceptional skill across all apparatuses. Japan's Reina Matsusaka earned the bronze medal, showcasing a distinctive style and flawless technique en route to a score of 127.750.

In the Senior Group All-Around event, the Uzbekistan team claimed the gold medal, showcasing impeccable synchrony and innovative choreography to earn an impressive 69.950 points. The Japanese team captured the silver medal with 68.750 points, while Kazakhstan secured the bronze with a total of 61.300 points.

Rhythmic Gymnastics African Championships

The 18th edition of the African Artistic Gymnastics Championships, held in Marrakech, Morocco, also took place on 3 May, 2024, featuring competitions for both senior and junior titles. The event also served as a qualification opportunity for the Olympic Games.

The All-Around Men's team was won by Egypt, who clinched the goal medal, with the individual award going to their gymnastic star Omar Mohamed. Morocco, the hosts, got their hands on the silver, with the individual accolade going to Mohamed Afify. In 3rd place was team Cameroon, with the individual bronze award handed to South Africa's Luke Thomas.

In the Women's All-Around, Egypt were the team who clinched gold, with star Jana Mahmoud winning gold. South Africa managed the silver medal, with Egyptian sensation Judy Abdalla securing 2nd place in the individual event. Morroco managed bronze, with their star Salina Bousmayo claiming the individual prize.

The juniors saw Egypt pip South Africa to the overall prize, landing gold, with Morocco taking bronze. In terms of individuals, Egypt's Dana Khalil won gold and Goudy Khalifa won silver, respectively. Syan du Preez of South Africa managed 3rd place.