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RHYTHMIC GYMNASTICS: Francesca’s unsure of future
FRANCESCA Fox admits that she doesn’t know if her Team GB team’s dramatic journey has come to an end or not but she’s simply glad to have some time to reflect on a fairytale ending at London 2012.
The 20-year-old Hilperton star and teammates Louisa Pouli, Rachel Smith, Jade Falkner, Lynne Hutchison and Georgina Cassar cemented their place in rhythmic gymnastics history by becoming the first team to represent Great Britain at the Olympic Games.
They proved they weren’t just there to make up the numbers as they only narrowly finished in 12th place behind Canada and Germany in the first round of the team event.
Fox and her self-funded team spent the best part of two years training full-time at the University of Bath.
At the start of this year, they were plunged into a selection row with British Gymnastics over their initial decision not to nominate the team for the host place at the games.
But after winning an appeal, the Team GB girls realised their Olympic dream and Fox says that her team-mates’ first priority has now become making up for the sacrifices they made to get themselves to the games.
“We’ve got a bit of time off and it’s all a bit hard to know what’s going on at the moment,” she said.
“A lot of the girls are going back to school and things like that too – Lynne’s got to start her A-levels, Jade’s in the middle of hers and Rachel’s off to uni.
“So really, we don’t really know what’s next and it’s a bit sad but we’ve just got to wait and see. There are a few performances that we’ve got left to do and the main thing for me is to rest up and try to get myself a job.”
The GB girls were expected to be also-rans in the team event at London 2012 and Fox was delighted to prove the doubters wrong.
She added: “We were so nervous before but we all said to each other that no matter what happened on the mat, we’d all still be sisters and we’d all still love each other.
“We actually had one error where the ribbon didn’t come through one of the hoops properly but I think we covered it up pretty well.
“We were all so happy with the routine and we’ve set the standard now for the next GB team that comes through.
“We’ve dreamt it, believed it and achieved it – it feels amazing.”