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Saturday, 27 July, 2002, 16:42 GMT 17:42 UK

Australia's women clinch gold

By Saj Chowdhury
BBC Sport Online at the G-Mex

Australia lived up to their favourites tag by winning the women's team all-round gymnastics title at the Commonwealth Games.

The team of Jacqui Dunn, Stephanie Moorhouse, Allana Slater, Alexandra Croak and Sarah Lauren were a class apart from the rest of the field.

England, who were Australia's closest challengers throughout, took silver while Canada won bronze.

Four gymnasts from each team competed on four apparatus - the vault, floor, asymetric bars and beam - the best three scores (marked out of a maximum 10) made up the total for that apparatus.

The team then moved on to the next rotation until all apparatus had been competed on.

The Australian team began well on the floor with Slater leading the way after a superb display which merited a score of 9.575.

England, who also began on the floor, scored a total of 27.000 after the first rotation, 1.275 points behind Australia, with Canada in third on 26.225.

The pattern was repeated in the next rotation as a two-way battle developed between the England and Australia for the gold and silver positions.

But yet again it was Australia who fractionally came out on top with Croak and Slater yet again providing the high scores with some precise vaulting.

By the completion of the asymeytric bars Australia had forged ahead by three points after England came unstuck with low scores from Nicola Willis and Katy Lennon.

Although Australia were virtually assured of gold barring a disaster on the beam, England were less certain of silver after a tough session on the same apparatus.

But Willis managed to stay composed to take England to 106.900 while Canada finished with 106.800. Australia finished with 111.325.

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