Whitlock celebrates worlds silver


Published: Thursday 9th October 2014 by The News Editor

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Max Whitlock has won all-around silver at the World Gymnastics Championships in China to equal Great Britain’s best-ever result in the event.

Whitlock matched Dan Keatings’ 2009 silver after he finished behind Japan’s Kohei Uchimura, who claimed his fifth consecutive world all-around title – the first man ever to do so in history.

Uchimura scored 91.965 across all six pieces of apparatus, with Whitlock in silver with 90.473 while Japan’s Yusuke Tanaka won bronze with a total of 90.449.

It capped a rollercoaster week for Whitlock after he was a late replacement in the all-around final following team-mate Nile Wilson’s withdrawal with a wrist injury.

Wilson and Daniel Purvis had qualified for the blue riband event on the two per country rule, but after Wilson pulled out Whitlock was able to step into his place as he also finished in the top 24.

Whitlock said: “The whole trip has been a rollercoaster. I struggled in qualification and then only learnt yesterday that I was in the final as Nile withdrew. I really can’t believe I’m now standing with the world silver.

“I think I went out and competed with no pressure, from starting on pommel I nailed my best routine of the week and that set me off.

“To compete alongside my idol Uchimura is a huge honour and to be on the medal podium with him is very special. It’s been a long year of competitions and this is just unbelievable.”

The result capped a strong year for Whitlock, who won team, all-around and floor gold at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow this summer.

Starting on pommel, European champion Whitlock displayed the style and highly difficulty moves that have made him such a renowned pommel worker to achieve a world class score of 16.000 – the highest in the final.

He scored 14.460 on his less-favoured rings and followed up on vault with a superb triple twisting routine which he landed dead centre for a terrific 15.366 to put him in silver medal position at the midway point.

A very strong mark of 14.975 on the parallel bars preceded a steady 14.200 on the high bar, but Whitlock made sure of the medal with an impressive 15.466 on the floor – a score bettered only by Uchimura.

Purvis finished in 11th place with a total of 87.699.

The World Championships continue on Friday with the women’s all-around final, where Ruby Harrold and Claudia Fragapane will compete for Britain.

Published: Thursday 9th October 2014 by The News Editor

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