Becky Downie misses gymnastics squad for Tokyo 2020 as sister Ellie lashes out at British Gymnastics

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Becky Downie says she was left with “so many questions” after learning that the British Gymnastics team for Tokyo had left out the events of the past month as “unbelievable”.

Despite being the world’s silver medalist on the bars, the controversial 29-year-old was left out of Team GB’s women’s gymnastics quartet for Monday’s Olympics, with four debutants instead.

Downie had to face the selectors alone last month after missing the final team trial following the sudden death of her brother Josh two weeks earlier.

Becky Downie (left) has missed the British women's gymnastics team for Tokyo 2020, while sister Ellie (right) lashes out at British Gymnastics for their treatment of the 29-year-old

Becky Downie (left) has missed the British women’s gymnastics team for Tokyo 2020, while sister Ellie (right) lashes out at British Gymnastics for their treatment of the 29-year-old

Brother Josh Downie, 24, died of a heart attack during a cricket net session days before the sisters were due to appear for the Olympic team in Cardiff

Brother Josh Downie, 24, died of a heart attack during a cricket net session days before the sisters were due to appear for the Olympic team in Cardiff

Brother Josh Downie, 24, died of a heart attack during a cricket net session days before the sisters were due to appear for the Olympic team in Cardiff

BECKY DOWNIE FULL STATEMENT

‘I don’t really know where to start. Ever since I was a little girl, winning an Olympic gold medal has always been my dream.

“I have no words to describe what it feels like to not even be able to try right now.

“The past year has been incredibly difficult, but the past month has been unimaginable.

“Now is not the time, but I have so many questions. No more than why I was offered an extra trial under such challenging circumstances, given what we all know now.

‘Performance aside, I’m first and foremost human. I don’t think I’ll ever really get over the experience I went through during the last trial.

“For those who ask, I can confirm that I appealed the decision, but it was rejected.

“I don’t think I’m allowed to share my objection or the answer, but with the proper permission I would welcome the opportunity.

“I’m not sure what will happen in terms of my future, but all I know is that I still love the sport and I feel like I’m in the shape of my life.

“I know I don’t want to retire like this.

‘But for now I want to congratulate all those selected. You should all be so proud and I will be cheering you on from home.

“Becky x.”

However, the two-time Olympian’s courageous decision to participate in the aftermath of the family tragedy proved futile – with her sister Ellie, a bronze medalist at the 2019 World Championships, and campaigners suggesting she was rejected for her previous criticism of the governing body.

The Downie sisters broke ranks last summer saying there was an “environment of fear and mental abuse” within gymnastics and that “abusive behavior was so ingrained in our daily lives that it was completely normalized.”

And Downie took to Instagram to open up about her devastation for being left out of the team for this summer’s Olympics.

“The past year has been incredibly difficult, but the past month has been unimaginable,” she wrote.

“Now is not the time, but I have so many questions. No more than why I was offered an extra trial under such challenging circumstances, given what we all know now.

The 29-year-old took to Instagram to break her silence about her omission from the squad

The 29-year-old took to Instagram to break her silence about her omission from the squad

The 29-year-old took to Instagram to break her silence about her omission from the squad

‘Performance aside, I’m first and foremost human. I don’t think I’ll ever really get over the experience I went through during the last trial.”

Downie also insisted that she will not consider quitting the sport and that she is in the shape of her life.

Commenting on her sister’s surprising omission on Monday, Ellie Downie, who decided to take time out from the sport after her brother’s death, tweeted: “I’d say it comes as a shock, but after how we been treated for years, it’s not really .’

A spokesperson for Gymnasts for Change, the campaign group formed after the abuse scandal, said: ‘We are often concerned that British Gymnastics is prioritizing stages over people.

“With Becky criticizing the culture in British gymnastics last year, it’s hard to believe their motivation to effectively end Becky’s career is a sinister warning to those who may speak out in the future.”

Becky took the chance to litigate after Josh's death while Ellie withdrew from the competition

Becky took the chance to litigate after Josh's death while Ellie withdrew from the competition

Becky took the chance to litigate after Josh’s death while Ellie withdrew from the competition

However, a panel of selectors has ruled out Becky and reportedly told her to appeal on the day of her brother's funeral.

However, a panel of selectors has ruled out Becky and reportedly told her to appeal on the day of her brother's funeral.

However, a panel of selectors has ruled out Becky and reportedly told her to appeal on the day of her brother’s funeral.

The Downie sisters had described an environment of fear overseen by Jane Allen, who retired as chief executive in October 2020.

The Downie sisters had described an environment of fear overseen by Jane Allen, who retired as chief executive in October 2020.

The Downie sisters had described an environment of fear overseen by Jane Allen, who retired as chief executive in October 2020.

Most Decorated British Gymnasts

1. Beth Tweddle: Six Medals

2. Becky Downie: two medals (incl. silver)

3. Ellie Downie: Two Medals

= 3. Claudia Fragapane: Two medals

= 3. Amy Tinkler: two medals

However, British Gymnastics performance director James Thomas defended the decision, insisting there was no ulterior motive.

He said the selection was made to give Team GB the best chance of winning a team medal – with all four women requiring all-round skills – over success on individual devices, with Downie being a bar specialist.

The women selected are Alice Kinsella, 20, Amelia Morgan, 18, and 16-year-old identical twins Jessica and Jennifer Gadirova, none of whom have ever won a senior World Cup medal.

“I have every confidence that the team was judged on gymnastics merit and nothing else,” said Thomas.

“No athlete has been seen in a different light in the past 12 months when speaking out.

“We have been very clear in every panel discussion for the Olympics selections that no gymnast would be prejudiced when speaking out about problems.

“We looked at performance from the two-year window. There were some very good performances from Becky in 2019. But the judges felt they hadn’t seen the level of performance needed to win a medal based on current form and that was a risk.”

Sports post revealed last month how insiders felt Downie was being ‘sabotaged’ for speaking out about abuse after British Gymnastics chose to use equipment other than the one she had trained on during the trials.

Ellie took to Twitter to criticize British Gymnastic's treatment of her sister after the tragedy

Ellie took to Twitter to criticize British Gymnastic's treatment of her sister after the tragedy

Ellie took to Twitter to criticize British Gymnastic’s treatment of her sister after the tragedy

Becky and Ellie then missed the Cardiff event after discovering their brother Josh, 24, had died tragically after suffering a heart attack while playing cricket.

While Ellie, who suffered an injury, had barred herself from the Olympics, Becky took the option of holding her own personal trial just a fortnight after her brother’s death.

After her performance, on May 26, she received the shocking news that she had not been selected for Tokyo and was given just 48 hours to appeal — a deadline that coincided with Josh’s funeral. Downie’s appeal was ultimately dismissed last Friday.

Gymnasts for Change added: ‘Where other sports organizations may have provided much support in the sudden death of a talented team member’s sibling, British Gymnastics responded by offering Becky a second trial, just days before her brother’s funeral.

Downie is the second most awarded athlete in British women's gymnastics, and her failure was labeled a 'total shock' by Gymnasts for Change

Downie is the second most awarded athlete in British women's gymnastics, and her failure was labeled a 'total shock' by Gymnasts for Change

Downie is the second most awarded athlete in British women’s gymnastics, and her failure was labeled a ‘total shock’ by Gymnasts for Change

Becky Downie is on top form and easily one of the most talented artistic gymnasts of her generation. The decision to exclude her from the Tokyo team is a total shock.

“As a veteran of two Olympic teams and captain of both Rio and World Cup teams, it’s incomprehensible why the bars specialist was dropped in a year of achieving a 6.8 SV. [start value] in training in what has been touted as one of the toughest routines in the world.”

Meanwhile, Team GB insisted that they would not bring any coach embroiled in the gymnastics scandal to Tokyo.

Becky Downie wrote this post on Instagram alongside some pictures of her with her brother

Becky Downie wrote this post on Instagram alongside some pictures of her with her brother

Ellie Downie, 21, also posted a lengthy message on Instagram, sharing photos of her and her brother paying tribute to him

Ellie Downie, 21, also posted a lengthy message on Instagram, sharing photos of her and her brother paying tribute to him

Both sisters posted emotional tributes to their brother on social media after his death in May

British Gymnastics confirmed on Monday that national team coach Colin Still, who was placed under investigation last September after Amy Tinkler, the bronze medalist in Rio 2016, revealed he had used the term “fat dwarf” against her in an email. mail, still working with the team.

However, Team GB chef de mission Mark England said: ‘I am determined that we can look the British public in the eye and say that this is a team that is ethical. It is important that the governing bodies also recognize this.

“I don’t expect to get nominations from officials under investigation.”

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