Smith wins gold at last


Published: Saturday 18th April 2015 by The News Editor

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Louis Smith ended his wait to win an elusive gold in a major competition with victory in the pommel horse final at the European Gymnastics Championships in Montpellier.

Smith has won two Olympic medals on pommel – bronze in Beijing in 2008 and silver at London 2012 – but he was finally on top of the podium after scoring 15.8 on an afternoon when Kristian Thomas also delivered gold for Great Britain on the floor.

The 25-year-old was competing for Britain for the first time since London 2012 after coming out of retirement ahead of the 2016 Olympics in Rio.

“It’s unbelievable I don’t really know what to say,” Smith told

“I was first up and had to stay composed which I did, it’s just brilliant.

“It was always a bit hit and miss as to whether I could come back and today for me was a trial for myself as I was so nervous.

“But to win gold makes it all worth it – incredible.”

Thomas’ tumbles began a memorable day for Britain in southern France as his routine returned a score of 15.166 points and his first individual title at a major championship.

“It’s amazing but I knew the routine I had was consistent and I was in contention,” Thomas, 26, said.

“I was so nervous watching the other scores come in, to win gold is incredible.”

Becky Downie took silver in the women’s bars with a score of 15.233 as Russia’s Daria Spiridonova claimed gold.

“I’m really pleased as I came in to this championships with a new routine it so could have gone either way,” Downie said.

“The judges clearly like it and there’s room for improvement, so it’s all very positive.”

Downie’s younger sister Ellie just missed out on a medal in fourth place after earlier finishing fifth in the vault, with fellow Briton Claudia Fragapane sixth.

Courtney Tulloch finished eighth in the men’s rings.

Published: Saturday 18th April 2015 by The News Editor

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