Olympic bronze medallist Daniel Purvis knows it will be tough but he is determined to win a fourth straight men’s all-around title at the Artistic Gymnastics British Championships in Liverpool.
The 22-year-old claimed all-around gold for the third time in a row at the Echo Arena in June last year, the Championships also acting as the final trial for the London 2012 Olympics.
Purvis took gold in Liverpool with a routine that scored 91.550 and went on to form part of the quintet that won Britain’s first men’s team medal at an Olympics for a century with bronze.
He will go head-to-head with Sam Oldham and Max Whitlock, who were both part of the Olympic bronze medal winning team, however another member Kristian Thomas is a doubt.
He suffered injury at the France World Cup and will be reviewed by the chief medical officer while competition will also come from world silver medallist and Beijing Olympian Daniel Keatings.
First-year seniors Frank Baines and Courtney Tulloch, who won double gold at the Australian Youth Olympic Festival in January, will also pose a threat to Purvis but he’ll be more than prepared.
“Last year’s British Championships was fantastic. Taking the title and also individual medals in such a brilliant arena, and hopefully this year I can do the same,” said Purvis.
“There’s no doubt the competition is really high and with some juniors moving up to senior level it’s not going to be easy but I’ll be battling all the way.”
However Rebecca Tunney, the youngest member of Team GB at London 2012, won’t be in Liverpool to defend the women’s all-around title as she recovers from injury.
Hannah Whelan, the 2011 winner who joined Tunney at London 2012 and took the English title at the start of the month, is determined to succeed in her absence but knows it won’t be easy either.
“I’m really looking forward to competing again in front of the home crowd and atmosphere which is always great in Liverpool,” said Whelan.
“To have the boys and girls competing together will also really add to the event and be great for the fans.
“It would be great to reclaim my title but I know there are plenty of younger gymnasts coming up who are threats. I feel good though and will definitely be aiming to impress.”
© Sportsbeat 2013