England gymnast makes most successful four-gold debut | Sunday Observer

England gymnast makes most successful four-gold debut

7 August, 2022

Jake Jarman completed a superb Commonwealths debut with a fourth gold medal to become the most successful English male gymnast at a single Games.

Birmingham-born Joe Fraser had a chance to match the haul, but fell in the horizontal bar final after winning parallel bars gold.

Jarman took the vault title on the final day of artistic gymnastics.

Alice Kinsella recovered from disappointment in earlier events to take gold in the floor event.

England finish the Games with 16 gymnastics medals, 10 of which are gold.

Giarnni Regini-Moran added two silvers for England, finishing behind Jarman in the vault and Fraser on the parallel bars, with Ondine Achampong winning floor silver.

Jarman - at his first major senior championships - matched the number of golds won by Claudia Fragapane in 2014 and surpassed the three claimed by Max Whitlock in 2014.

The 20-year-old also won team, all-around and floor gold in Birmingham.

He was as composed as ever with two neat vaults and looked relieved after a difficult final effort, before celebrating with a delighted Birmingham crowd.

Regini-Moran, on his 24th birthday, put in an assured performance and was rewarded for his efforts as fans sang Happy Birthday after he completed his second vault. Jarman was the only gymnast to attempt a vault with a 6.0 degree of difficulty and it paid dividends as he twisted through the air deftly to pull it off.

He finished with a total score of 14.916, with Regini-Moran scoring 14.633 and Australia’s James Bacueti taking bronze with 14.283.

Jarman said he would find somewhere in his house to store his haul, adding: “Maybe a nice glass cabinet if there is space. I’m over the moon.”

The 20-year-old took up gymnastics because he “was a very hyperactive kid”.

“When I was seven or eight, I was in the park in Peterborough,” he explained.

“My mum told me a gymnastics coach was in the park at the same time and told her, ‘you should bring your kid to one of the local clubs.’”

Birmingham-born Fraser has also won pommel and team gold at these Games despite a broken foot and burst appendix suffered in the weeks before the competition.

He brushed aside his parallel bars opponents with his 6.5 difficulty routine, scoring 15.000 as Regini-Moran finished second with 14.733. Cypriot Marios Georgiou’s 14.533 was enough for bronze.

But he could not emulate Jarman’s four-gold success on the horizontal bar.

With history bearing down on him in his hometown and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in the crowd, Fraser slipped during his routine and fell to the floor.

The smile never left his face as the crowd willed him on when he returned to the bar and completed a routine that left him seventh.

“Being in this arena has filled me with so much joy,” Fraser said.

“This one has hit me so different, being in my hometown with a home crowd... performing out here has been one of my proudest moments to date.”

Fraser then enthusiastically supported his team-mate James Hall, who was initially in the bronze medal position but later slipped down to fifth as Cyprus’ Ilias Georgiou won gold, Australia’s Tyson Bull silver and Cypriot Marios Georgiou bronze.

Scotland’s Hamish Carter was sixth and compatriot Frank Baines eighth.

Earlier in the Games, a fall cost Kinsella an all-around medal and she sought redemption on the final day at Arena Birmingham.

She first competed in the women’s beam final as defending champion and wobbled again, but showed grit to regain her balance and nail the dismount.

Kinsella sat in third place as final gymnast Emma Spence began her routine, but was pushed out by the Canadian to finish fourth as Australia’s Kate McDonald and Georgia Godwin took gold and silver respectively.

But the 21-year-old would not give in, showing exception resilience in an accomplished floor routine and, afterwards, waved gratefully at the fans who had supported her warmly all day.

Her 13.366 brought an individual gold to add to the team title she won with England, as Achampong finished second with 13.033 and Australian Emily Whitehead’s 13.000 was enough for bronze. Wales’ Poppy-Grace Stickler finished sixth.

In the beam final, England’s Georgia-Mae Fenton was fifth, with Wales’ Jea Maracha sixth and Sofia Micallef seventh.

Northern Ireland’s Ewan McAteer finished sixth in the men’s vault, with Wales’ Emil Barber eighth, while compatriot Brinn Bevan was seventh on the parallel bars.

(BBC Sport)