Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner. Facebook Messenger An icon of the facebook messenger app logo. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Facebook Messenger An icon of the Twitter app logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. WhatsApp Messenger An icon of the Whatsapp messenger app logo. Email An icon of an mail envelope. Copy link A decentered black square over a white square.

Georgia Mae Fenton ready to use Tokyo hurt as inspiration for Paris Olympics

Georgia-Mae Fenton is relishing the prospect of being centre-stage in Paris (David Davies/PA)
Georgia-Mae Fenton is relishing the prospect of being centre-stage in Paris (David Davies/PA)

Three years ago Georgia Mae Fenton feared her lifelong dream of becoming an Olympian had ebbed away in a lonely Tokyo hotel room while her history-making team-mates soaked up the acclaim on centre-stage.

Fenton was all kitted out for the big occasion but as travelling first reserve for the GB women’s gymnastics team, she was denied access to the Olympic Village, forced to contend with a further degree of separation at a Games already ravaged by Covid restrictions.

Mixed emotions inevitably greeted the sight of her friends and team-mates confounding expectations by clinching the nation’s first women’s team medal in 93 years, but Fenton, now 23, emerged from the experience doubly determined not to be a bit-part player again in Paris.

FIG Artistic Gymnastics World Championships – Day Four – M&S Bank Arena
High-flyer Georgia-Mae Fenton hopes to seize her Olympic chance in Paris (Peter Byrne/PA)

Fenton got her wish, as she was named on Thursday in the five-strong women’s team for next month’s Games in the French capital, along with Alice Kinsella, the only surviving member of the 2020 bronze medal-winning squad, veteran Becky Downie and fellow Olympic debutants Ruby Evans and Abigail Martin.

“When I got the call asking me to be reserve for Tokyo, my first reaction was that I didn’t want to do it,” Fenton, a three-time Commonwealth Games gold medallist, recalled to the PA news agency.

“It’s the worst situation to be in. You go through the whole of the Olympic build-up, then kitting-out with the team, but when you get to the Games you have to stay in a different hotel and you don’t really join in the celebrations.

“But I didn’t know if I’d get a chance again, and I didn’t want to look back and think that I’d just given up. Being reserve was really tough but I’m glad I did it, because it was character building. It taught me a lot about myself, and it inspired me to stay on and reach the point I’m at today.”

Fenton returned from Tokyo to retain her Commonwealth title on the uneven bars in Birmingham and was also a part of the women’s team that won a world silver medal in Liverpool the following year.

But the team’s chances of repeating their remarkable performance in Tokyo has been undermined by high-profile injuries to arguably their best two athletes, reigning world floor champion Jessica Gadirova and emerging talent Ondine Achampong, both of whom suffered torn ACLs.

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games – Day Four
Great Britain’s women’s gymnastics team could struggle to repeat their Tokyo exploits (Martin Rickett/PA)

“Ondine is my best friend and she has been a rock for me, and hopefully I have been a rock for her too,” added Fenton.

“We wanted to experience this together and I know her time will come. We have achieved great things as a group and the injuries have been pretty awful.”

Triple gold medallist Max Whitlock leads a five-strong men’s team that also includes Jake Jarman, the reigning world champion on vault, Joe Fraser, a former world champion on parallel bars, plus debutants Harry Hepworth and Luke Whitehouse.

Whitlock stepped away from the sport after clinching his second-straight pommel crown in Tokyo in 2021 but returned last year and recently announced he would make the 2024 Games his last.

Olympics Package
Max Whitlock will bid for his fourth and final Olympic gold medal in Paris (Mike Egerton/PA)

Two-time Olympic medallist Bryony Page will bid to add an elusive gold medal to her collection and she will be joined in a three-strong trampoline team by debutants Izzy Songhurst and Zak Perzamanos.

Performance director Tracy Whittaker-Smith said: “With first Games debutantes alongside established Olympic greats like Max Whitlock OBE and Bryony Page, we feel we have a fantastic mix of athletes, all of whom have achieved major championship medal success this cycle.

“We head to the Games with medal ambitions across the board and more than that, with the aim to unite the gymnastics community in a celebration of our incredible sport with these inspirational Olympic role models at the heart of that.”