Sparkling efforts for Sapphire at British Gymnastics championships

Ondine Achampong competing for Sapphire at the British Champs.
Ondine Achampong competing for Sapphire at the British Champs.

The second weekend of March saw the British Championships make its return to the Liverpool Echo Arena where, in front of a packed crowd of 11,000 gymnastics enthusiasts, the Hemel Hempstead-based Sapphire Elite gymnasts went toe to toe with the best from across the country.

Ondine Achampong, having taken three titles in December at the British Espoirs, has now gone up an age-group.

She took silver last month at the English Championships and now has the all-around bronze at her first Junior British Championships.

Her elegant beam work combined with huge difficulty and a new tricky bar dismount gave her two bronze apparatus medals as well.

Hallie Copperwheat also represented Sapphire in the competition and was placed ninth overall.

She performed her full-twisting double back somersault on the competition floor for the first time and put out a strong display.

Gipsy Squires and Lauren Matthews also competed, putting out clean routines against some tough opposition.

Alyieana Rahim, who had a good 2017 when she represented England in an international event, looks set to continue her success as a first-year senior gymnast.

She performed a dynamic floor and vault but unfortunately had falls on the bars and beam, before finishing in 26th place.