European Championships 2018: Rhys McClenaghan wins gold on pommel horse

Ireland's Rhys McClenaghan has won gold on the pommel horse at the European Championships in Glasgow.

The Newtownards teenager scored 15.300 to better the personal best that he set during Thursday's qualifying round.

Great Britain's Olympic and World champion Max Whitlock missed out on a medal scoring 14.000.

McClenaghan has enjoyed an excellent 2018, winning gold at the Commonwealth Games before claiming top spot at the artistic gymnastics World Cup.

The 19-year-old was tipped for a podium finish having topped qualifying.

It was expected that Whitlock and Russian David Belyavskiy, who was reigning European champion coming into the competition, would also be in contention to take gold.

A mistake forced Whitlock to dismount and that saw him finish in seventh place while Belyavskiy was edged out of the medals by final competitor Saso Bertoncelj.

The Slovenian scored 14.866 to finish joint second alongside Croatia's Robert Seligman.

McClenaghan's magical year

It has been a rollercoaster year for the County Down man who shot to prominence when he won Northern Ireland's only gold medal in Gold Coast in April.

He also claimed gold at the Artistic Gymnastics World Cup in July despite training for the event in the back garden of his family home after he and coach Luke Carson were effectively forced out of their training base in Bangor.

The pair have since been training in Dublin having been offered facilities by Sport Ireland and Gymnastics Ireland.

"Without everything happening behind the scenes it is still an incredible achievement," said McClenaghan.

"This is is a test of my character and I can go through any obstacle and come out on top.

"I was determined to go through my routine and nobody else was going to put me off that.

"There is so much more to come, I can promise that. I am looking forward to the next battle."