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Title dream proved prophetic as Gravesend's Giarnni Regini-Moran becomes first Briton to win men's floor gold at World Gymnastics Championships

Gravesend's Giarnni Regini-Moran defied years of injury hell to win a world floor gold medal that came to him in a dream.

Aged 17 he spent six hours in an operating theatre - snapping his posterior cruciate ligament, damaging his MCL and straining his ACL all at once in a horrific training accident.

Gravesend's Giarnni Regini-Moran is the first Briton to win a men's floor world title. Picture: British Gymnastics
Gravesend's Giarnni Regini-Moran is the first Briton to win a men's floor world title. Picture: British Gymnastics

Pain is a fact of his life but some measure of sporting payback came in the form of a fairytale victory on floor - the first Briton to win the title - at the World Championships in Liverpool.

“It’s really weird, but I had a dream last night that I became world champion,” he said. “I really don’t know what it was or why I had it, but I had a dream.

"I didn’t tell anyone because I didn’t want to talk it up or curse it, but now it’s happened.

“There were so many times when I almost gave up and threw in the towel.

“To be able to jump, land, run with the power I need on that floor, I never thought I’d be able to do it.

“I didn’t believe I would be strong enough to be with the world’s best because of what I went through. My knee is never going to be 100% again but I’ve learned to live with it.

“I’ve had physios and doctors spend hours, days, months with me. I lost that self-belief - you can let this stuff get you down and be negative about it, but you have to believe in yourself.”

Regini-Moran is the fourth British artistic gymnast after Beth Tweddle, Max Whitlock and Joe Fraser to be crowned world champion. He goes again on Sunday, alongside Joe Fraser, in the parallel bars final.

The door opened when Filipino pre-event favourite Carlos Yulo fell on his first pass and Japan’s Ryosuke Doi stepped off the floor.

Regini-Moran executed the joint-most difficult routine attempted by any gymnast in the final, sticking all of his landings to score a superb 14.533.

He beat Japan’s Daiki Hashimoto, crowned the best male gymnast in the world with all-around gold, by 0.33 points and said: “That’s only the third time I’ve ever hit that routine. I didn’t make any in training.

“In training I was trying to push the difficulty and upgrade but it never clicked until I sat down with my coaches and made some changes.

“Anything can happen in a final, you’ve got to land on your feet and land well. I really don’t know how I feel, I’m lost for words.”

The World Gymnastics Championships Liverpool 2022 will be one of the largest international sporting events ever to be held in the city. Over 500 gymnasts from more than 70 countries will compete at the M&S Bank Arena from 29 October to 6 November 2022. Tickets are available at www.2022worldgymnastics.com/tickets

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