Kinsella slip costs her a medal but Achampong takes super silver

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Kinsella slip costs her a medal but Achampong takes super silver
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By Andy Baber in Birmingham

A heartbreaking fall for home favourite Alice Kinsella on the beam cost her a medal in the women’s all-around and took the shine off a sensational silver for Ondine Achampong.

The fine margins between success and failure were laid bare as Kinsella - who comes from Sutton Coldfield - was left in tears following a mistake at packed-out Birmingham Arena.

Her error on the beam, an element she won gold on four years ago, dropped her out of contention as teammate 18-year-old Achampong finished second behind Australia’s Georgia Godwin.

Kinsella had looked primed for gold before the slip-up as her score of 11.000 proved fatal to her chances, leaving her in fourth place with a combined score of 50.600.

And while Achampong was delighted to pick up her second medal of the Games after the team gold she won with Kinsella and Co, she said she couldn’t have done it without her teammate and admitted her disappointment took the shine of her success.

“I don’t know how to describe it, I’m a bit tired but it’s really amazing,” she said. “I don’t think I could have got through this without Alice, I don’t think I could do it on my own. Just having someone to talk to, I just made sure she was okay once beam finished.

“We had a chat and we made sure that everything was okay and that we could move on to the next piece and I couldn’t ask for someone better than Alice by my side.

“It definitely takes the shine off a little bit, I would have loved to have shared it with her, but we’ve obviously shared the whole experience of the competition together which was amazing.”

She added: “I know it’s always hard to come back from a fall, especially because Alice is so good and I know she was struggling after the beam and everyone was so tired which played a role.

“She did really well to come back from doing her beam like that. To even get on the floor and do a floor routine that well was impressive and I’m sure she’ll be back stronger.”

The Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games is inspiring people and communities across the country and Achampong hopes their performance will motivate others to get involved in sport.

Achampong also suffered a blip of her own on the beam but was able to recover to record a score of 12.500 before nailing a brilliant floor routine to finish with a total of 53.000.

That saw her finish just behind Godwin, who topped the podium with 53.550, while Canadian Emma Spence took the bronze medal ahead of Kinsella with a total score of 52.350.

On her beam mistake, Achampong said: “I try to split up my competition into each piece so once one piece is over, it’s fine if a mistake comes. I’ll deal with it and once I’ve done it it’s over. I move on to the next piece and then hopefully it’s goes okay on the next one.

“With my positive mindset coach, I’ve made up a pre-performance routine so I can control my nerves, it helps me to count to ten and then I just go. It helps me to focus and get in the zone.”

Achampong top scored on her opening apparatus, posting 13.900 on the vault, but she said she may have to re-evaluate her favourite pieces after producing a string floor finale.

“The crowd definitely helped me on floor and vault. It’s what gets you through it, especially with the adrenaline of everyone screaming - it definitely got me through,” she added.

“Vault was never my piece, it was always my weakest piece but now I’ve got on it, I’ve trained a lot and it’s actually up there with one of my favourites, so starting on it definitely helped me.

“I was able to go out there and do a good vault and that set me off. Beam is still my favourite piece but vault might be a close second for me.

“I would have said floor is my weakest but after doing that I might have to re-think that. That was definitely one of my best floor routines. I just went out to do a better floor routine than yesterday.

“Yesterday my third tumble was very low and I was just thinking about the third tumble, get the rest of them out of the way and make sure the third tumble was the best I could do.”

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