High bar costly to gymnast Lytwyn

GYMCANrgbANTWERP, Belgium – Stoney Creek’s Kevin Lytwyn came up with a strong effort on floor and rings at the opening of the 2013 world gymnastics championship on Monday (Sept. 30).

Lytwyn placed 11th in the floor routines and 24th on the rings but faltered on the high bar.

But Vancouver’s Scott Morgan gave Canada’s rebuilding men’s gymnastics team a huge boost on Monday with one of the best floor routines on day one of competition. He finished sixth in a field of 106 gymnasts packed with former world and Olympic champions, giving the 24-year-old a legitimate chance of qualifying for Canada’s first men’s event final at a world championship in seven years.

Japan’s Kenzo Shirai led the field in the floor exercise with 16.233 points, followed by 2011 world floor champion and 2012 Olympic all around champion Kohei Uchimura of Japan in second with 15.333 and Germany’s Fabian Hambuchen in third at 15.266. Morgan was less than two tenths out of third with a score of 15.100.

To reach the final Morgan will have to hope that no more than two gymnasts in the final qualification group on Tuesday come up with a better score to knock him out of the top eight.

Rounding out the Canadian results, Anderson Loran of Saskatoon placed 22nd on high bar and Ken Ikeda of Abbotsford, B.C. finished 31st on pommel horse and cut short his parallel bars routine after jamming his finger just after getting started on the apparatus.

After just missing out on qualifying a full team for the 2012 Olympics, Smith is aiming to get the squad back on track leading to the 2016 Summer Games in Rio de Janeiro.