Regini-Moran and Nagornyy shine again as gymnastics programme ends with a flourish
Giarnni Regini-Moran (GBR) and Nikita Nagornyy (RUS) confirmed themselves as two of the stars of Nanjing 2014 on the final night of competition in artistic gymnastics.
Nagornyy (centre), Kardos (left) and Regini-Moran on the podium for parallel bars
With gymnasts from Great Britain, Russia and China continuing their dominance on the second night of apparatus finals, Regini-Moran took gold in the vault and bronzes in the parallel bars and horizontal bar. The Briton had already won gold in the men’s floor exercise and the all-around, the sport’s blue-riband event, earlier in the Games. Nagornyy also took his tally to five medals, three of them gold, after winning two medals on the final night.
Regini-Moran came out charging with the first vault of the night and ended with a winning score of 14.695. “I’m so proud that all the hard work I’ve put into training has paid off,” he said, describing the competition “unreal”. “I was fighting through illness [a slight flu] and to get where I am now is an unbelievable achievement.”
Ma Yue (CHN), who is based in Nanjing, won silver with 14.416, while Nagornyy suggested that his friendly rivalry with Regini-Moran could be a regular feature of future meets, scoring 14.383 for bronze.
The men’s parallel bars came again saw the two gymnasts jostling for position on the podium. This time Nagornyy won gold with a score of 14.033, followed by Botond Kardos (HUN) close behind on 14.016 and Regini-Moran on 14.000.
Admitting that he had not felt confident of victory on the parallel bars, Nagornyy described his performance as “unexpected”. “My job was just to do my thing and do it well, and then I’d finish in the top three, but I did it and I won. I didn’t think I’d be first,” said the Russian. He added that he was pleased with his overall performance: “I do not see anything negative from this competition. These are the [Youth] Olympic Games, and the whole country is watching.”
In the men’s horizontal bar, gold was claimed by Kenya Yuasa (JPN), who scored 13.700 to edge out Luka van den Keybus (BEL) by 0.034, with Regini-Moran claiming another bronze, 0.067 behind the winner. Speaking after receiving his gold medal, Yuasa conceded that finding the “balance between difficulty and execution” was a challenge but said his “target was to win the horizontal bar”.
Wang nails it on the beam
In the women’s programme, a “very happy” Wang Yan (CHN) nailed a clean and elegant performance for a score of 14.633 in the beam. “It was a big step forward,” said Wang of her performance on an apparatus that she had previously declared her least favourite. “In the warm-up I made a mistake on the first element, but in the competition I was able to nail it, and this was not easy.”
Her nearest rivals were Flavia Lopes Saraiva (BRA) on 14.000 and Elissa Downie (GBR), who scored 13.500 and finished with bronze.
Lopes Saraiva (centre), Tutkhalyan (left) and Downie took the floor exercise honours
The women’s floor competition came down to a battle between Brazil and Russia, with Lopes Saraiva claiming her second medal of the night, this time gold, with a score of 13.766. Her well executed tumbling wowed the crowd, who clapped along with the music, which, Lopes Saraiva admitted, helped her a lot. “The support of the audience gave me strength, especially from the Brazilians in the crowd,” she said. “I didn’t pay attention to the performances of the others. I only focused on my routine.”
Russia’s Seda Tutkhalyan won silver with a score of 13.733, to claim her third medal of the Nanjing Games and Downie bronze with 13.466, to claim her fourth medal of the Games.