Huntingdon gymnast Louis Smith earns Team GB call up but Dan Keatings misses out

GYMNASTICS coach Paul Hall has told The Hunts Post it was a ‘bitter sweet’ moment for Huntingdon Gym when Louis Smith and Sam Oldham were named in Team GB for the London 2012 Olympics - because Dan Keatings missed out.

Smith and Oldham have been named in the men’s artistic team for London 2012 - but their training-mate Keatings was left off the list of 18 names when it was released at a press conference on Wednesday afternoon.

“I’m very pleased for Louis and Sam,” Hall said. “But desperately disappointed for Dan who has worked so hard after his injury and did a brilliant job.

“It’s been a busy time for him and we fought he had done enough - but the selectors had some big decisions to make and he didn’t quite make it.

“It’s a bitter sweet moment.”

Smith, who won the bronze medal in the men’s pommel horse competition at the last Olympics in China, was always expected to be included in the five-man artistic team - but both Keatings and Oldham have been battling their way back from injuries and both have performed well in recent international and national competitions. Neither gymnast was in the team that qualified for the Olympics earlier this year.

Oldham, at 19, is the youngest member of the men’s selection, and made his senior debut at the World Cup in Cottbus last year, where he reached the final of the high bar competition. He is also the current reigning Youth Olympic champion in the high bar event. He is the surprise choice in the five.

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Hall said: “Sam has strong links with our club though he is now at Loughborough. I am absolutlely delighted for him - he’s over the moon.”

Smith will lead the team look to build on his performance in Beijing, and reproduce the fine form he displayed at the 2012 European Championships in May, where he claimed team gold and won a silver on the pommel horse.

Team GB Chef de Mission Andy Hunt said: “I am delighted to welcome these 18 gymnasts to Team GB for the London 2012 Olympic Games.

“Representing your country at the Olympics is a very unique, special experience and I am sure this talented and determined group of gymnasts will play a full part as members of Our Greatest Team at our home Olympic Games.”

There was also upset for Huntingdon gymnast Marissa King.

The gymnastic Team GB is:

Women’s Artistic:

Imogen Cairns (age: 23, hometown: Bristol)

Jennifer Pinches (age: 18, hometown: High Peak)

Rebecca Tunney (age: 15, hometown: Manchester)

Elizabeth Tweddle (age: 27, hometown: Bunbury)

Hannah Whelan (age: 20, hometown: Stockport)

Men’s Artistic

Sam Oldham (age: 19, hometown: Nottingham)

Daniel Purvis (age: 21, hometown: Southport)

Louis Smith (age: 23, hometown: Peterborough)

Kristian Thomas (age: 23, hometown: Wolverhampton)

Max Whitlock (age: 19, hometown: Hemel Hempstead)

Trampoline Individual Female

Katherine Driscoll (age: 26, hometown: Houghton-le-Spring)

Rhythmic Individual

Francesca Jones (age: 21, hometown: Wellingborough)

Rhythmic Group

Georgina Cassar (age: 18, hometown: Bath)

Jade Faulkner (age: 18, hometown: Swindon)

Francesca Fox (age: 20, hometown: Trowbridge)

Lynne Hutchison (age: 17, hometown: Bath)

Louisa Pouli (age: 22, hometown: Bath)

Rachel Smith (age: 19, hometown: Bath)