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Page last updated at 11:02 GMT, Monday, 16 August 2010 12:02 UK

Francesca Jones leads Welsh gymnastic bid in delhi

Francesca Jones
Francesca Jones competed at the 2006 Commonwealths in Melbourne

World championship gymnast Francesca Jones will lead Wales' youthful six-strong squad at the Commonwealth Games.

The 19-year-old, who starred at the 2009 worlds in Japan, will be joined by five male team-mates in Delhi.

Grant Gardiner, Robert Hunter, Clinton Purnell, Alex Rothe and Matthew Hennessey are named by the selectors.

Jones will compete in all the rhythmic events - rope, ball, hoop and ribbon - where she will bid to qualify for two Commonwealth finals in October.

Jones, the only member of the squad with previous Commonwealth Games experience, hopes to make the all around and each individual apparatus final while her male colleagues will compete in the artistic section.

Teenager Gardiner, 20-year-old Matthew Hennessey, 23-year-old vehicle mechanic Robert Hunter, 21-year-old builder Clinton Purnell, Junior Commonwealth competitor Alex Rothe, 17, and 20-year-old Matthew Hennessey, whose mother was a professional gymnast, have all been included.

A decision will be made closer to the Commonwealths whether each athlete will compete in all of the six apparatus - floor, pommel horse, rings, vault, P bars and horizontal bar - or their specialist apparatus only.

Coach Andrew Morris, who captained the 1990 Commonwealth Games team in Auckland, said: "We are expecting great thing from this team.

"Francesca travels to Delhi with Games experience.

"After being the youngest member in Melbourne, she has now matured into a formidable competitor, and with her recent win at the Great Britain Championships she is now ready to prove her quality at her second Games.

"Our men's team are all new to the Games experience but have come a long way in achieving the stringent standards that were required for selection. I believe that we have a team that will produce some surprises in India."

Team Wales' Commonwealth Games gymnastics team:

Name: Grant Gardiner
Date of birth: 15 August, 1991
From: Woking
Achievements: Competed at the 2010 London Open

Name: Matthew Hennessey
Date of birth: 4 April, 1990
From: Wrexham
Achievements: Competed at the Junior Commonwealth Games and in the winning team at the 2009 Northern European Championships

Name: Robert Hunter
Date of birth: 27 September, 1986
From: Newcastle

Name: Francesca Jones
Date of birth: 9 November, 1990
From: Kettering
Achievements: Competed at the 2006 Commonwealth Games and the 2009 World Championships.

Name: Clinton Purnell
Date of birth: 5 May, 1989
From: Cardiff
Achievements: Won the Northern European vault title

Name: Alex Rothe
Date of birth: 17 April, 1993
From: Carmarthen
Achievements: Celtic Cup winner 2007 and 2008

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see also
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Gymnastics results
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Get involved in gymnastics
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