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You are in: Sports > Gymnastics > News

English gymnasts to capitalise on home ground?

21 July 2002

One of England's great medal hopes, Beth Tweddle, believes home advantage could be crucial.

Beth Tweddle

Beth Tweddle has potential for gold

Beth Tweddle, Britain’s first ever European Championship medallist, is confident home advantage will spur the England women’s gymnastics team to success at the XVII Commonwealth Games in Manchester.

The 17-year-old from Liverpool, who won bronze on the bars at the European Championships in Greece in April, was speaking ahead of the England team’s first training session at the G-MEX Centre on Saturday 21 July.

The gymnast, who also writes a diary update for the Kid's Zone on this site, said: “We went to the Athletes Village earlier today and it’s a great atmosphere.”

“Having a home crowd hypes you up and you tend to perform better. You also want to do well in front of parents and friends, who don’t often get to come and watch us compete as most of our competitions are abroad.”

Her comments were echoed by Rebecca Owen, who at 15 is the youngest member of the England team.

“I haven’t performed in a major competition in front of such a large home crowd before,” said Owen. “We can’t wait to compete in the arena on Saturday."

“England won a silver medal in the women’s team competition at the last Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur – hopefully we’ll be able to go one better this time around.”

England coach Amanda Kirby also thinks that the support of the home crowd will inspire the young team.

“Home support can go either way but I think it will help them because they are an inexperienced team and it will lift them to a good performance,” she added.

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