Grit and determination have paid off for a former Greymouth teenager who has just been selected in the New Zealand women’s artistic gymnastics team to compete in Singapore, in November.
Meg McInroe is a daughter of Alan and Lisa McInroe, who moved to Christchurch two years ago. Meg began with the Greymouth Gymnastics Club when she was five, and since moving to the city she has joined the Christchurch School of Gymnastics.
Lisa McInroe told the Greymouth Star yesterday that Meg’s first day of gymnastics was on her fifth birthday and she thought it was her birthday present.
She has been selected in the step eight grade and will compete in the all-round competition on the vault, uneven bars, beam and floor. She trialled for the New Zealand team over two days in early July, after being out with a toe injury since April so had only had one full week back training before the trials.
“I told her it was going to be hit and miss, but she needed to go out and do her best. On day one of the trial she over-thought everything, but on the second day, she nailed it.”
The three weeks following the trials were a long wait to hear if she had succeeded.
Meg will continue training, in preparation for the nationals in the first week of October.
Last year at the nationals she finished as the step 7 New Zealand national champion and aims to achieve the same this time around, but in the higher (step 8) grade.
Following the nationals, Meg will have four weeks of intensive training before heading to Singapore.
Now a Year 11 student at Christchurch Girls’ High School she trains 23 hours over six days a week, in between studying for level one NCEA.
Mrs McInroe said Meg was a natural gymnast from a young age.
“She could cartwheel from the age of three and has proven herself over the years with grit and determination.”
At the Singapore competition she will be aiming to finish in the top six and wants to achieve an overall placing in her specialist apparatus, the beam.
Lisa McInroe (nee Nelson) was a top gymnast herself and represented Canterbury until she ‘retired’ when she was 15.