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Ireland's Meaghan Smith: 'I Wanted To Keep Going'
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A series of flashbacks at the 2018 World Championships in Doha.

Canadian-born Irish gymnast Meaghan Smith is a relative newcomer to international competition, but her motivation and pride extend as deep as her Irish roots.

Smith’s journey to Doha began three years ago when she pondered her lineage and her competitive future.

“My gymnastics career in Canada was kind of over,” said the 20-year-old Smith. “I was at the senior level, but I wasn’t at the top, so I knew I wouldn’t be going to international events, and I wanted that opportunity. I’m also proud to be Irish, so we thought, ‘Hey, I can compete for Ireland.’”

Smith, whose maternal grandmother is Irish, contacted an Irish club that welcomed her to become a member. She made her international debut for Ireland at the European Championships in Glasgow in August.

The chance to extend her career on behalf of Ireland gave Smith, who placed 86th all-around in qualifications in Doha, a fresh incentive to work towards her potential.

“Now, I have a goal,” Smith said. “I have things to look forward to, like the World Championships. I know they are on my calendar, so when I’m in the gym, I think, ‘OK, how can I be better, how can I improve for this competition?’ And, I love the sport. I didn’t want to give it up. I wanted to keep going.”

IG’s John Crumlish served as chief editor/reporter for the organizing committee’s News Service at the 2018 World Championships in Doha.

Complete coverage of the 2018 World Championships be in the December issue of International Gymnast.

To subscribe to the print and/or digital edition, or to order back issues of International Gymnast magazine, click here.

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