ANTWERP, Belgium - Combining tumbling power and artistic flare Ellie Black of Halifax advanced to both the women’s all around and floor finals on Wednesday at the world gymnastics championships.
Black also came within a whisker of also qualifying for the vault final but was bumped out of the eighth and final spot by Chantysha Netteb of the Netherlands.
In the all around, Black finished 10th in a field of 81 competitors with a score of 55.465 points to secure her spot in the top-24 final on Friday.
Victoria Moors of Cambridge, Ont., also qualified for the all around final placing 15th with 54.798 points.
Simone Biles of the United States topped the field with 60.133 points followed by teammate Kyla Ross in second with a score of 59.198 and Jinnan Yao of China in third at 57.965.
Black, a key member of Canada’s record-breaking 2012 Olympic team, gives Canada its best shot best shot at a world championship medal in women’s competition since Elyse Hopfner-Hibbs of Toronto won bronze on beam at the 2006 event in Aarhus, Denmark.
“I came from not even being on the national team to going to the Olympics in a half a year so it has been an amazing experience for me,” said Black. “This is my first world championships and I’m just so happy to be here representing Canada and having a blast doing it.”
For Moors, cementing her status as one of the world’s best all around gymnasts was tempered by the disappointment of falling short of qualifying in the floor final.
In training Moors had been landing with ease one of the most difficult moves in women’s gymnastics – a double twisting, double somersault – that had focused great attention on her floor routine.
In the qualification, however, Moors didn’t get all the way around on the last somersault and touched her hands on the floor, dropping her to 18th and well out of the top-eight needed to qualify for the final.
“It’s gymnastics, you can’t be perfect all the time,” said Moors, who also competed on Canada’s Olympic team in London.
“It was so frustrating because in training it was bang on, but I’m glad I still made the all around. I’m just going to go out, try my best and have fun with it.”
The women’s all around final takes place on Friday and the floor final is on Sunday.