Tokyo 2020: Bronze in women's team gymnastics is first team medal for Britain since 1928

Great Britain's Alice Kinsella, Jennifer Gadirova, Jessica Gadirova and Amelie Morgan celebrate with their bronze medals. Credit: PA

Great Britain claimed a first women’s team gymnastics medal since 1928 as they delivered an extraordinary bronze at the Tokyo Olympics.

The team of Alice Kinsella, Amelie Morgan and 16-year-old twins Jennifer and Jessica Gadirova impressed throughout and moved above Italy in the final rotation.

The Britons totalled 164.096, with the Russian Olympic Committee taking gold and the US team settling for silver for the first time since 2008.

The US were hampered in their efforts for gold when star performer Simone Biles had to withdraw owing to a "medical issue".

Biles misjudged her opening vault, scoring 13.766, the lowest of the first rotation, before leaving the floor briefly with the US team trainer.

Although the 24-year-old returned, she put on her tracksuit and did not compete in the Americans’ next apparatus, the uneven bars.

The inexperienced Team GB squad surprised many by grabbing a bronze. Credit: PA

As the Americans battled to overhaul an imposing 2.500 deficit at the halfway stage, the inexperienced Britons continued to impress with a series of solid displays.

Mistakes from the teams ranked above them gradually raised the possibility of the young team matching their fifth place finish from Rio in 2016, which was their best result since 1928.

But even deep into the last rotation there was little indication of the drama yet to unfold, with a series of Italian vault scores suddenly catapulting the team onto the podium.

It was a spectacular vindication of the British team’s selection policy, which was racked with controversy over the decision to omit former world medallist Becky Downie.