ANTHONY WISE has praised a quartet of SEGC gymnasts for their call-ups to the GB elite Performance Squad for 2018.
Danny Crouch, George Atkins, Jamie Langridge – who are all coached by Anthony – and Sean Dalton – who is coached by Andrew Tucker – all learned of the honour just before Christmas (all four boys are pictured above).
Danny, 12, was crowned British and English champion in 2017, and George, nine, won the national finals in November as well as winning the two other national competitions this year.
Jamie, nine, came fourth at the national finals, with just one mistake costing him second place, and also came second earlier in the year at another national competition.
Sean, ten, could not compete at the national finals because of a wrist injury but his displays in training as part of the 2017 national squad earned him a retrial at Lilleshall Sports Centre and he earned his spot for 2018.
Anthony, who was promoted to SEGC Assistant Head of Men’s Artistic Gymnastics this year, said: “All four thoroughly deserve their place in the GB squad and lead the pathway for all the talented younger gymnasts we have coming up at South Essex.
“It was George and Jamie’s first year of being in-age to compete nationally and qualify for national squad. And they had two very different journeys.
“I have coached George since he was five, while I was still a gymnast myself, and he is the hardest working person I think I have ever met.
“He comes into the gym on a mission every single day to become even better and inspires me to come to the gym every day, as I hope I do the same for him.
“Jamie has only been in my squad properly for 18 months and his progress in that time has been pretty amazing.
“He has jumped up 14 places nationally in the last 12 months from when he competed out-of-age last year. And his skill level has increased at an astonishing rate.
“Danny has been with me for two-and-a-half years now and is our squad team captain.
“He has an amazing talent for floor and vault but we really concentrated on his weaker areas and his all-around work has really improved.
“And this year he was rewarded for that hard work by becoming our first all-around Under-12 champion in nine years, the first since Brinn Bevan in 2008.
“Sean’s few days at the national sports centre went very well and earned him his place on next year’s squad.
“Sean has his first British and English championships early next year and I am very excited to see how he and his coach Andrew do there.”