Becky Downie has been left out of Team GB’s gymnastics squad to go to the Tokyo Olympics, with four women picked to make their debuts.
Selection was delayed for the female members of the team to allow the 2019 world silver uneven bars medallist time to complete a special trial, having missed the final event to do that following the sudden death of her brother.
Josh Downie died last month after suffering a heart attack while playing cricket, and Becky’s sister Ellie had already ruled herself out as a result.
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Heading to Japan are the exciting Gadirova twins Jennifer and Jessica, as well as 2019 European beam champion Alice Kinsella and 2021 European uneven bars bronze medallist Amelie Morgan.
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It is Jessica Gadirova’s selection that will really excite British fans though, after the 16-year-old’s breakthrough at the European Championships in April, winning all around bronze and vault silver before sealing gold in the floor exercise.
Jessica Gadirova picked up three medals, including gold, at the European Championships
Image credit: Getty Images
Her sister Jennifer is just as talented but missed the event through injury. At just 20, Kinsella is the most experienced of the gymnasts picked and she goes to Tokyo as the reigning balance beam Commonwealth Games champion and as a 2019 European gold medal in the same event.
17-year-old Morgan has multi-sport Games experience following the two silvers and one bronze she won at the 2018 Youth Olympics in Buenos Aires. She became the first British gymnast to win five medals at the Junior European Championships in Glasgow, while as a senior she picked up her first medal by claiming bronze at the Basel event earlier this year, in the uneven bars.
The men’s squad, led by double Olympic champion Max Whitlock, had already been selected.
“The line-up is an exciting one full of emerging talent who we’re looking forward to seeing perform on the biggest stage,” said British Gymnastics Performance Director James Thomas.
“With such a strong pool of talent in Great Britain and only four places available the selection meant making difficult decisions.
We feel the team selected has great potential to contend amongst the world’s best and individually each gymnast has the ability to excel in the all-around and apparatus competitions.
“The gymnasts have been extremely well supported by their coaches and clubs and we’re now looking forward to final preparations as they ready themselves to do the nation proud this summer.”
‘If I can go to LA 2028, that would be incredible’ - Whitlock
Whitlock to lead Team GB’s men’s gymnasts at Tokyo 2020