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TeamGym European Championships: Interview - Lewis Jones

Sports Mole reporter Ben Knapton speaks to GB TeamGym coach Lewis Jones about the European Championships and the impact of lockdown on the sport.

Having been given the green light to continue elite-level training amid the coronavirus pandemic, Bracknell Gymnastics Club are stepping up their preparations for the rescheduled TeamGym European Championships.

The biennial event sees gymnasts at junior and senior level partake in three pieces of apparatus – tumble, floor and trampette – and Great Britain will endeavour to win their first-ever medal at senior level when the 13th European Championships take place next April in Copenhagen, Denmark.

One man tasked with training up the selected gymnasts for the European Championships is Lewis Jones, a high-performance coach and former GB athlete from Bracknell.

The 30-year-old juggled his coaching and training commitments until his retirement in 2016 – prior to which he won numerous British titles and competed as part of the GB Senior Mixed team at the 2014 European Championships.

Jones is part of the Technical Expert Pool in the GB coaching team – which also includes a unit leader and choreographer for each category (men's, women's and mixed) – and the former GB gymnast is working with the men's teams after overseeing the women's unit for the 2018 Europeans.

The pathway to the European Championships has changed drastically since Jones plied his trade as a gymnast, and here, the GB coach speaks to Sports Mole reporter Ben Knapton about the build-up to the Europeans and how he managed to adapt his coaching methods during lockdown.

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Olympic medal table header
CountryGold medalSilver MedalBronze MedalT
United StatesUnited States14161141
Olympics flagOlympic Athletes from Russia912930
Great BritainGreat Britain58821
Today's Olympic highlights header

Friday's key events

· The athletics schedule begins, with 100m sprinter Dina Asher-Smith among the names in action on the opening day. The men's 10,000m final concludes the action, with Team GB's Sam Atkin and Marc Scott taking part in the absence of 2012 and 2016 champion Sir Mo Farah (1am-2.30pm)

· Victoria Thornley is Team GB's representative in the women's single sculls final (1.33am)
· Great Britain will be going for gold in the men's eight final (2.25am)

· Team GB duo Molly Renshaw and Abbie Wood take part in the women's 200m breaststroke final, but new Olympic record-holder Tatjana Schoenmaker of South Africa is the hot favourite (2.41am)
· Luke Greenbank has very realistic ambitions of picking up a medal in the men's 200m backstroke final (2.50am)
· There is also British representation in the women's 100m freestyle final, although any medal for Anna Hopkin would be a surprise (2.59am)
· With one gold and one silver already under his belt at these Games, Duncan Scott goes again in the men's 200m individual medley final (3.16am)

· Bryony Page will be looking to repeat her 2016 heroics in the women's event (5am-7.30pm)

· Bradley Forbes-Cryans will be looking to emulate Rio gold medallist Joe Clarke in the men's kayak event (6am-9am)

· The women's tournament enters the quarter-finals, with Great Britain facing Australia at the Ibaraki Kashima Stadium (10am)

> Today's schedule in full
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