Simone Biles pulls OUT of USA’s Tokyo 2020 team finals with ‘medical issue’ as pre-Games favourites miss out on gold

SIMONE BILES dramatically pulled out of the Olympic team gymnastics final as the United States suffered a shock defeat at the hands of the Russians – with Britain winning bronze.

Biles, the four-time gold medalist and stand-out global star in Rio in 2016, withdrew after botching her vault in the opening round of the final and is now a doubt for the rest of the Tokyo Games.

A USA Gymnastics spokesman said: “Simone has withdrawn from the team final competition due to a medical issue. She will be assessed daily to determine medical clearance for future competitions.”

The British foursome, consisting of 16-year-old twins Jessica and Jennifer Gadirova, Amelie Morgan and Alice Kinsella, roared up from seventh in the standings to pip Italy for bronze – their nation’s first medal in the event for 93 years.

American sensation Biles had been targeting six golds in Tokyo, which would have confirmed her as her sport’s undisputed GOAT.

But Biles, 24, had uncharacteristically admitted on social media that she had been struggling to cope with the ‘weight of the world on my shoulders’ in the build-up to this event.

Biles failed to complete her two-and-half twist vault and landed poorly, leaving suspicions of an injured ankle – only for American team sources to suggest that she left the competition due to mental health issues.

She is due to compete in Thursday’s all-round individual event – for which she was red-hot favourite – but that now looks in doubt.

Team-mate Jordan Chiles had to replace Biles on the bars but by that time the Americans – who had been unbeaten in worldwide team events for more than decade – were well behind the quartet from the Russian Olympic Committee.


Americans closed the gap significantly when Russians Valdisalva Urazova and Angelina Melnikova fell off the beam in the third rotation.

But Chiles, who had performed brilliantly as a stand-in for the bars and beam, slipped during her floor routine, ending American hopes of gold.

The Russian team of Angelina Melnikova, Urazaova, Lilia Akhaimova and Victoria Listunova seized gold ahead of the American team, which also featured Grace McCallum and Sunisa Lee.

USA took the silver medal with Team GB claiming bronze.


Biles has spoke about the weight of expectation in an Instagram post after progressing through qualifying on Sunday.

She wrote: "It wasn’t an easy day or my best but I got through it.

"I truly do feel like I have the weight of the world on my shoulders at times.

"I know I brush it off and make it seem like pressure doesn’t affect me but damn sometimes it’s hard hahaha! The olympics is no joke! BUT I’m happy my family was able to be with me virtually. They mean the world to me!"

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