Britain’s top gymnasts are about to take on rivals from around the globe at one of the sport’s most prestigious events. The 2018 Artistic Gymnastics World Championships get underway in Doha, Qatar, on Thursday 25 October. The competition, which is taking place in the city’s Aspire Academy Dome, runs until Saturday 3 November and includes team, all-around and individual apparatus events.
There’s a lot at stake for the Brits taking part in this competition. They could clinch world titles if they beat the likes of Simone Biles and Kohei Uchimura. They can also qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games if their performances impress. So, who will British fans be cheering on at the event?
The Women’s World Title Hopefuls – Which British Stars Could Shine in Doha?
It’s back to business for the Downie sisters as they make their return to the competitive stage. Both Becky, a double European champion on the uneven bars, and Ellie, the 2017 women’s European all-around champion, have been out of action recently due to injury. Both picked up team bronze medals at the 2015 World Championships, but they’ll be aiming to win their first individual world titles this year. However, Ellie recently admitted that she is still having problems with her ankle.
Another member of the women’s team hoping to become a world champion for the first time is Kelly Simm. The Hampshire-based gymnast has already added a glittering gymnastics trophy to her display cabinet this year. In March, she was crowned British all-around women’s champion after putting in an outstanding performance at Liverpool’s Echo Arena.
Georgia-Mae Fenton will also be hoping to top the podium in her second senior World Championships. The former Junior British uneven bars champion won a gold medal on the same apparatus at the Commonwealth Games earlier this year, so she’s proved she can perform on big occasions.
The final competing member of the women’s team is Alice Kinsella, although Lucy Stanhope will be travelling as the reserve. Alice will be hoping for a little extra luck at the 2018 championships. Last time round, she qualified for the all-around finals, but couldn’t compete in them due to injury. She’s had a good year so far though: she won the all-around bronze medal at the Gymnastics World Cup competition and seized the gold in the Commonwealth Games’ beam event.
The British Men’s Team – Which Homegrown Heroes are Heading to Qatar?
One of the biggest names in British gymnastics, Max Whitlock MBE, will be hoping to triumph at the championships again. The double Olympic champion currently holds the world title for the pommel horse event. Will he win it for a third time in Doha?
Fellow Olympic medallist Nile Wilson was scheduled to take part in the competition, but an injury has forced him to withdraw. This year’s national men’s all-around champion, Brinn Bevan, who was part of the silver medal-winning British team at the 2015 World Championships, will compete in his place.
Dom Cunningham heads to Doha on the back of a superb performance at the 2018 European Championships. He won a gold medal on the floor, as well taking home a silver from the team event. The 2017 British all-around champion, Joe Fraser, will also be part of the team, as will James Hall, the bronze medallist in the 2017 European Championships’ men’s all-around competition.
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