Ireland gymnast Chris O’Connor yesterday claimed the winner's medal at the individual apparatus finals of the Northern European Championships at the Lagan Valley LeisurePlex in Lisburn.

O’Connor, who was a member of the Ireland team which competed in the World Championships in October, qualified for Sunday’s final in sixth place with a score of 14.000.

But the Douglas and Tolworth (UK) gymnast saved his best performance on the apparatus for last, finishing with an impressive winning score of 14.550 to fend off competition from Wales' Clinton Purnell and Finnish gymnast Kirmes Oskar finished second and third respectively.

It was a very strong end to the international season for the Irish gymnast, who will have one eye on next year’s European Championships, which take place in Bulgaria in May, before the World Championships in China in May.

There were further good performances for Ireland in the women’s artistic gymnastics apparatus finals where Emma Lunn was unlucky to narrowly miss out on a medal on the beam; she finished with 12.175 – just .025 behind third-placed Martine Skregelid of Norway.

Niamh Rogers competed in her first international vault final and put in another good performance to take seventh place in the final standings.