Khwela back in the fray and ends fourth in Ostrava | SASCOC - SASCOC

Khwela back in the fray and ends fourth in Ostrava

By Mark Etheridge

Commonwealth Games gymnastics silver medallist in 2010, our Jennifer Khwela has vaulted back into competition mode after a lengthy period on the sidelines due to injury.

After medalling in New Delhi, the stocky KwaZulu-Natal gymnast suffered a knee injury in July last year and was unable to qualify for the London Olympics earlier this year.

Team South Africa had now gymnastic representation in London, and just one Odette Richard, in Beijing 2008.

Khwela competed in Ostrava, Czech Republic last week, ending a creditable fourth spot in the Vault final of the FIG Challenge Cup. The line-up included 2011 World Championships bronze medallist Phan Thi Ha Thanh of Vietnam.

Khwela also ended eighth in the floor exercises.

Said coach Julie Adamson. “I’m quite pleased with these results as she hasn’t competed internationally since her knee surgery.”

But Adamson is not really thinking as far ahead as Rio de Janeiro and the 2016 Olympic Games. “Rio is a long way off and we’re concentrating on the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland at the moment.”

She told Road to Rio 2016 on Thursday: “Next year Jen needs to improve her world rankings in order to be eligible for Commonwealth. ┬áHopefully we will find some funding in order to achieve this as the club is not going to be able to fund overseas events next year. As far as I know her next event will the SA trials in February.”