Meg Ryan joins Rhys McClenaghan on Team Ireland for Tokyo 2020

2nd July 2021, 12:43pm | National

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Gymnastics Ireland are proud to announce that it has been confirmed by the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) and the Olympic Federation of Ireland (OFI) that Meg Ryan has secured her place to compete in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Meg, from Douglas GC in Cork, will compete as Ireland's 2nd female representative to qualify for an Olympic Games.

She will join European gold & World bronze medallist, Rhys McClenaghan, when they depart as part of Team Ireland for Tokyo in 2 weeks' time. With less than a month to go until the start of the Games the excitement is building as they focus on their final preparations.

The two gymnasts are among the first generation of gymnasts to come through the restructured Gymnastics Ireland High-Performance system now based at the Sport Ireland Campus. They will be joined by coaches Emma Hammill & Luke Carson, Performance & Technical (P&T) Manager Sally Johnson and Brevet Judge Denis Donoghue . McClenaghan will be up first to compete on Pommel on Saturday 24th July, while Ryan will compete in the Women's All-Around event on Sunday 25th July. Further details on how to watch the games on RTE will be announced soon.

Speaking about the announcement Rhys McClenaghan said: 'I'm incredibly proud to be representing Ireland at the Tokyo Olympics. I will also be representing everybody who has helped and supported me along the way in my career. This will forever be one of my greatest achievements, and I look forward to having the opportunity to show everybody what I have been working on through all these years.'

Meg Ryan said: “I’m delighted. It was a long wait for me but it feels amazing to finally get the confirmation! I’ve worked really hard so I can’t wait to get out there now!”

Speaking today, Gymnastics Ireland CEO Mr. Ciaran Gallagher said: 'After a very difficult year it is superb to see our gymnasts officially join Team Ireland! Huge congratulations to Meg in booking her place to Tokyo alongside Rhys. It has been a huge amount of work for both gymnasts to get to this point in addition to their coaches Emma & Luke. It is also excellent to see that the GI High-Performance system, led by our P&T Manager Sally Johnson, is working and has been able to facilitate these talented gymnasts in booking their places to Tokyo. There has been a huge amount of work and investment by Gymnastics Ireland & Sport Ireland in restructuring/building our HP system over the last number of years/cycles. Rhys & Meg stepping out into the arena in Tokyo in a few weeks' time will only serve as motivation for the many talented young gymnasts on our national squad who are looking to follow in their footsteps! Roll on Tokyo 2020...'

Gymnastics Ireland's Performance and Technical Manager, Sally Johnson added: It has been an incredible journey to these Olympic Games. Coaches Luke and Emma have worked extremely hard in preparing Rhys and Meg for these Games starting from their very first session at a young age on the Irish Squad program, both following through to compete in the Youth Olympic Games, Junior Europeans and leading into the Senior program representing Ireland in World Cups, European Championships and World Championships.

A special mention to Sport Ireland and the Sport Ireland Institute for all the support provided in the gymnastics program. For the gymnasts, coaches and their families, myself and the Gymnastics Ireland team, it is a very proud selection. We are looking forward to finally travelling to the Games and I wish the very best of luck and a great experience for all".

Luke Carson, Rhys' coach added: 'I felt exceptionally proud when myself and Rhys wore our Olympic kit for the first time. It was a reminder that hard work pays off and to truly strive to achieve what you want in life. I am incredibly grateful for all the support along the way from Gymnastics Ireland & Sport Ireland who have helped make this happen.'

Meg's coach, Emma Hammill said: 'I’ve known and worked with Meg since she was a very young gymnast. Her work ethic and dedication are a credit to herself, her club and her country. She is a dedicated, hardworking athlete and is deserving of the honour of calling herself an Olympian.'

The Gymnastics Ireland team for the Tokyo 2021 Summer Olympic Games:

GYMNASTS

  • Rhys McClenaghan (Men's)
  • Meg Ryan (Women's)

COACHES

  • Luke Carson (Men's)
  • Emma Hamill (Women's)

JUDGES

  • Denis Donoghue

HEAD OF DELEGATION

  • Sally Johnson

Olympic Schedule

Qualifications

  • Men’s Artistic - Saturday 24th July
  • Women’s Artistic – Sunday 25th July

Finals

  • Women’s Artistic All-Around final- Thursday 29th July
  • Pommel-horse final – Sunday 1st August
  • Women’s Artistic Apparatus final – Day 1: Sunday 1st August
  • Women’s Artistic Apparatus final – Day 2: Monday 2nd August
  • Women’s Artistic Apparatus final – Day 3: Tuesday 3rd August

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