Ellie Downie became the first British gymnast to win a European all around title. Photograph: Ellie Downie/Twitter

European all around champion Ellie Downie will miss the upcoming World Championships that are taking place in Montreal, Canada in October, as she recovers from ankle surgery, the BBC reports.

Downie, 18, injured her ankle last March, but she pushed through to win a gold, two silver and a bronze medals at the European Championships in Cluj Napoca, Romania in April.

Last Monday, however, Downie finally underwent surgery, and will miss Worlds to allow full recovery.

‘My eyes are now set on getting ready and fit for the Commonwealth Games next year’, Downie said. ‘I’m very excited to be on the road to recovery and get fit again. A minor setback is a pathway for a major comeback.’

British Gymnastics backed Downie, stating that she is expected to be ‘fully fit for an important year of competition in 2018’.

Despite Downie’s positive attitude, however, the news comes as a shock to her fans, as Downie was one of the favourites to win the World all around title. Last April, she became the first British female gymnast to ever win a European all around title. If she wins the World all around title, she will break another record, becoming the first British gymnast to win such title. Expectations, however, are postponed to 2018.

Ellie’s sister Becky Downie will also miss the World Championships, as she recovers from an elbow injury sustained at the European Championships in April.

The absence of the Downie sisters opens up a chance for younger gymnasts to make their mark. Alice Kinsella, Georgia-Mae Fenton, Kelly Simm and Maisie Methuen now are all in contention for a place on the team, alongside Olympian Claudia Fragapane and Olympic medallist Amy Tinkler.

By Talitha Ilacqua


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