Ellis O’Reilly created history in the early hours of the morning when she became the first Irish female gymnast to qualify for an Olympic Games.

The 18-year-old captured a place at the Rio 2016 through her performance at the Aquecce Rio test event, the final qualifying event for the Games.

O’Reilly trains out of the Europa Gymnastics club in London and is coached by Sam James.  

Ireland’s Kieran Behan on Saturday also qualified for Rio.

A delighted O’Reilly said: “I’m over the moon really. I’ve been training a long time for this with my coach and I’m just so pleased it came together on the day.”

London-born O’Reilly, who qualifies for Ireland through her Irish grandmother, said of becoming the first Irish female gymnast to qualify for the Olympics: “It’s pretty amazing really. I feel really proud of myself.”

She added: “My training has been going really well. I’ve been quite consistent in the gym, doing all my numbers, so I knew I just had to go out there and do what I’ve been doing in training and hope that it was enough really.”

Speaking of the achievement from Rio, Gymnastics Ireland chief executive Ciaran Gallagher said: “Ellis has made history for Gymnastics Ireland by qualifying to the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. 

“This is a huge step forward for our women's programme and in becoming the first Irish female gymnast to qualify to an Olympic Games, Ellis' achievement will serve to inspire to all the young up-and-coming Irish gymnasts who will want to follow in her footsteps.

“The focus for Ellis and coach Sam James now shifts to the summer Games where she will join Kieran Behan in flying the Irish flag at the most prestigious competition in our sport."