North Vancouver’s Scott Morgan finished seventh out of 137 competitors in floor exercise Tuesday in Antwerp, Belgium to become the first Canadian man to qualify for a world gymnastics championships event final since Kyle Shewfelt in 2006.
Morgan hit the floor on Monday, Day 1 of qualifying, and knocked out an almost flawless routine, scoring 15.100 points.
“I was really nervous on floor but as the routine progressed I got more and more confident and everything panned out,” Morgan said in a Gymnastics Canada press release. “It was a pretty awesome experience.”
The 24-year-old member of North Vancouver’s Flicka Gymnastics Club then had some waiting to do as he sat sixth after Day 1 with more gymnasts to compete on Day 2, Tuesday. Morgan tracked the competition online while practising at another facility.
“The Wi-Fi was terrible so we were refreshing the page constantly to see the results,” said Morgan. “We were all biting our nails and when it came up I was seventh and had qualified for finals there was a nice little celebration.”
Kenzo Shirai of Japan was the top qualifier with 16.233 points, followed by two-time world floor champion Diego Hypolito of Brazil with 15.600 points and 2012 Olympic all-around champion Kohei Uchimura of Japan at 15.333.
This is Morgan’s first world championship competition. The Seycove secondary student quit the sport for four years during high school but came back in 2007 and has worked his way back into the top ranks. He’ll try to leap all the way onto the podium in the floor final scheduled for Saturday.
“I’ve done pretty well internationally so I knew there’s always a chance but the competition here is extremely stiff and everything just lined up and worked in my favour,” he said. “I’m just going to try and hit the best routine I can.”
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