Our British men’s team of Nile Wilson, Kristian Thomas, Louis Smith MBE, Daniel Purvis and Courtney Tulloch have qualified 2nd into this Saturday’s 2016 European Championship team final with a total score of 267.020. Finishing just 0.705 behind Russia in first with 267.725 and ahead of home country Switzerland in third with 263.662, GB looked calm and composed as they set out to make finals.
With three gymnasts competing on each apparatus and all scores counting towards the team total, it was a tense competition as each country looked to make the top eight and make it into the team final.
With no all-around event at these championships, individually it was all about apparatus finals with the top eight gymnasts on each piece of apparatus making it through. On the floor, Dan scored a strong 14.966 to make the final in 4th with Kristian joining him in 8th with 14.833. Over on the pommel, Louis Smith performed beautifully to top qualification and make the final with 15.833. Lord of the rings Courtney Tulloch shone on his favoured piece of apparatus scoring a world class 15.466 to make the final in 6th. On the vault, Kristian powered his way to the final in 6th with an average of 14.866. Finally on the high bar, both Kristian and Nile performed superb routines to both score 15.033 and head into the final in 1st and 2nd respectively (Kristian just edging out Nile on execution).
Kristian Thomas: “We’re very satisfied with our performance as a team, a great job by everyone today. In qualifying it is about posting clean routines and doing the job to get to the final, what’s very positive is that we’ve done that with more to give. It will be tough to overhaul Russia but we’ll give it everything on Saturday.”
Louis Smith: “I’m very happy with my routine and most importantly posting that score on pommel for the team. With Max not being here it was extra important that I gave the team a big score on pommel so I made sure I nailed it. Everything we are doing out here is part of a bigger journey towards Rio, today was a step closer and the aim is to keep improving.”
Nile Wilson: “I thought the team were fantastic today. For me personally to do all six apparatus in the format of the competition where every routine counts was a big responsibility and I’m proud to have done it for my country. Saturday it’s the same again and we will battle as hard as we can.”
The competition continues tomorrow with GB’s Joe Fraser and Giarnni Regini-Moran going for gold in the junior all-around final. Follow our Twitter @BritGymnastics for updates from 5.30pm UK time.