Gymnastics: Keatings claims Euro gold as GB hit new heights

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The Independent Online

Daniel Keatings gave further evidence of Britain's emergence into the top rank of gymnastic nations leading a home one-two at the European Championships in Birmingham yesterday.

Britain won team silver yesterday and Daniel Purvis took bronze in the floor earlier this afternoon before the hosts claimed a one-two in the second individual apparatus final of the day.

Olympic pommel horse bronze medal winner Smith, who qualified in first ahead of Keatings - the World Championships all-around silver medallist - scored 15.375 in the final, but his team-mate bettered the mark with 15.600 to take gold.

Smith went first in the competition and was seen biting his towel as he watched the remaining seven finalists attempt to overhaul his total.

His Huntingdon club-mate Keatings was the penultimate competitor to take to the apparatus and put in a flawless display to take the top position on the podium, with Smith second and Slovenia's Saso Bertoncelj claiming bronze with 14.900.

In the floor competition, Germany's Matthias Fahrig won gold, with Greece's Eleftherios Kosmidis taking second and Purvis equal third alongside Germany's Marcel Nguyen.

Kosmidis set the standard with a score of 15.400 and Southport's Purvis followed up with 15.250 - a mark which was matched by Nguyen.

Wolverhampton's Kristian Thomas managed a 14.975 before Fahrig's stunning 15.650 secured gold in the first individual event today.

Thomas finished fifth.