England’s women came close to matching the men’s “amazing” medals in their individual all-around final in Delhi this evening, but had to settle for second best as Australia swept the podium.

“You have to take your hat off to the Australian girls,” said England’s main hope Imogen Cairns, who finished the four disciplines in fourth with 54.650 points, an agonising 0.3 from the bronze.

“They got 1, 2, 3 here and were worthy winners. I couldn’t have done any more and was really happy with my performance.”

There was not much more Jocelyn Hunt and Laura Edwards could have done either as they finished fifth and sixth while Lauren Mitchell took gold well clear of her team-mate Emily Little with Georgia Bonora bagging bronze.

The Bristol-born Cairns won silver in the vault four years ago and scored well in that discipline and the floor exercises today but admitted she lost points on the uneven bars.

Although she only returned to competition this year after 15 months out with injury and two ankle operations, the 21-year-old is optimistic about her medal prospects in the individual apparatus competitions later this week.

“I’ve still got more chances to come,” she said. “And considering my recent injury problems I’m happy with the way the day went.”