Max and Harry do us proud!

Harry Winks in action for Spurs.
Harry Winks in action for Spurs.

Hemel’s favourite sporting son Max Whitlock’s became the first Briton to defend a gymnastics world title when dazzling on the pommel horse in Montreal on Saturday.

The 24-year-old’s astounding temperament meant a historic second world crown was always in the pipeline, at least according to Olympic captain Kristian Thomas.

Hemel Hempstead-born and raised Max also overtook Olympic teammate Louis Smith and Beth Tweddle with the most medals won at the competition – with two golds and four silvers gleaming in his armoury.

For Olympic gymnastics skipper Thomas, a close friend and teammate of Max, this comes as no surprise – even for a man seemingly forever under the spotlight.

“Max is a pretty chilled-out guy with whatever he does, whether that’s with gymnastics or other aspects of life,” said Thomas.

“Being a double Olympic champion is something that doesn’t faze him, if anything it’s the opposite and it gives him the confidence to keep pushing on to bigger and better things.

“I don’t think he ever feels the pressure of that, the world is very much his oyster and he’s in a position where he can make the most of it.

“Each time he goes away to a championships, it’s a clean slate. That was the way I looked at things and knowing him the way I do I’m sure he’ll be in a similar position.

“Being a reigning champion, in whatever competition, is something that you have and can’t be taken away from you, it just put him in a position where he could go out, boss it and win it again.”

If his double gold success from Rio last year hadn’t done so already, Whitlock is now the name on everyone’s lips when it comes to British gymnastics.

Next year will see him put that to the test on home mats when the 2018 Gymnastics World Cup comes to The Arena Birmingham in March.

Yet with three Commonwealth and one world title already coming in the familiarities of Glasgow plus two bronzes at London 2012, any fears of Whitlock freezing under the pressure have surely been cast aside

Another Hemel-born sports star was in the headlines this week after Harry Winks made his England debut on Sunday. The 21-year-old has made just four Premier League starts for Tottenham, but the quality of his passing led England boss Gareth Southgate to select him in the centre for the 1-0 away win World Cup qualifier in Lithuania. The England chief said Winks could “carry the shirt” and also gave the side something different in midfield.

“I was very pleased with Winks.

“He tried to carry the ball forward where he could and did well,” Southgate said.