Hann thrilled to see Whitlock land third world title

SEGC’S Director of Coaching Scott Hann was thrilled to see the club’s top gymnast Max Whitlock become a three-time world champion after a brilliant pommel final in Germany.

Max, winner in 2015 and 2017, recovered from an early mistake to score 15.500 and hold off the challenges of Taiwan’s Lee Chih-Kai and emerging Irish star Rhys McClenaghan.

Max was also part of a British men’s team alongside Dom Cunningham, James Hall, Joe Fraser and Giarnni Regini-Moran which finished fifth.

And the South Essex star, who was competing at his seventh World Championship, produced solid routines on high bar and pommel.

Scott (pictured with Max), who was on coaching duty with the British team in Stuttgart said: “The team out here has been inspiring.

“Despite it being a very stressful Olympic qualification event, all the guys were on form and Max hit his pommel routine to top the field.

“The team final was incredible and to finish fifth with a few mistakes gives us confidence and an idea of what is possible.

“In fact all of the finals have been super intense but everyone has stood up to the challenge.

“Max did his thing and regained his title of world champion, and to top off the championships Joe also became world champion on parallel bars. It has been an incredible event to be a part of.”

South Essex favourite Reiss Beckford was also in action but did not secure the individual qualifying spot for Tokyo 2020 Olympics he hoped to achieve.

And SEGC’s Cypriot gymnast Tommy Nicolaou also travelled to compete in Stuttgart but picked up a frustrating injury.

Scott added: “Both Reiss and Tommy have been incredible and I am massively proud of them both.

“Reiss is the SEGC team captain while Tommy is just starting his career, and unfortunately he got injured in podium training.

“Reiss competed really well but with a massively strong field his Olympic qualification bid will now have to continue to May 2020.”