Dutch gymnasts step closer to London Olympics

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At the World Championships in Rotterdam, the Dutch men's gymnast team has secured itself a place in next year's championships. This also puts the team on course for the London Olympics.

With eight of the ten subdivisions completed, the Dutch team had already reached 13th place. This means even before the competition has finished the Dutch are sure to be in the top 24 - the requirement for guaranteed participation in next year's World Championships in Tokyo. There they will battle for places in the London Olympics in 2012. The male gymnasts may even have reached their best team position yet. Up to now, the best position the Dutch team had ever held was 20th place, in Stuttgart in 2007.

In the individual performance events, Epke Zonderland is currently fifth on the horizontal bar - last year he took silver at the championships in London. He needs to stay in the top eight to stay in the running for a medal this year. However, athletes from Germany and Italy still have to compete. Jeffrey Wammes has placed himself in the final for the vault.

Shortly before the championships, the main Dutch hope for a gold medal, Yuri van Gelder nicknamed "Lord of the Rings" pulled out of the competition due to a possible relapse after kicking his cocaine habit.




© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

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