Gymnastics Australia’s Men’s Artistic team has been dealt a double-blow with news that US-based athlete Clay Stephens ruptured his ACL earlier in the week followed by Commonwealth Games Gold medalist Chris Remkes suffering the same fate overnight at the Artistic World Cup round in Doha.
Having already competed in the recent World Cup events in both Melbourne and Baku, the in-form Remkes had made the finals of both the Floor and Vault in Doha.
Sadly, things went horribly wrong early in his Floor routine with Remkes landing awkwardly on an early pass. injuring his left knee.
Medical scans conducted in Doha confirmed the suspected ACL and meniscus injury, ending his World Cup season and his competing year.
Tracking for a named Olympic quota spot and positioning himself as a medal contender, the injury couldn’t have come at a worse time for Remkes with his recent form and consistent world class scores leading into the World Championships in October.
Unfortunately, Remkes won’t be alone in the rehabilitation process with team-mate and fellow South Australian, Clay Stephens also sustaining an ACL injury.
Confirmed only days ago, the US-based national team member sustained the injury while with his current club, the University of Illinois where he has been putting in great performance on the NCAA circuit. It is the second ACL blow for Stephens, after rupturing the ACL in his other knee in 2017 at the World Championships.
“The injuries are a devastating blow for our athletes at such an important time as they work towards their Olympic qualifying and with the nature of an ACL this will severely impact that goal and our Olympic quota,” said Andrew Logan, Gymnastics Australia National Performance Director.
“The full recovery process will be determined once Chris has returned to Australia and once we have completed consultations with Clay’s medical team in the United States.
“We wish both Chris and Clay all the very best with their recovery and will provide any support that is needed.”
Remkes will undergo further scans upon his return to Australia next week and return to the Gymnastics Australia national training centre at the AIS in Canberra to consult with the AIS Medical experts for rehabilitation.