Simone Biles left competition early at the Tokyo Olympics team competition Tuesday after a rare stumble on vault, and she will not be competing in the rest of the competition for the team event.
USA Gymnastics said in a statement, “Simone has withdrawn from the team final competition due to a medical issue.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.”
NBC had reported earlier that her coach said she withdrew due to a “mental issue.” Details were not immediately clear.
All eyes were on Biles to see if she would attempt a Yurchenko double pike on vault. Instead, as the Americans opened competition on vault, Biles bailed in the middle of her Amanar attempt, bringing down the difficulty level of her vault.
Rather than 2.5 twists, she only did 1.5, resulting in a score of 13.766 — remarkably low by Biles’ standard. The Americans ended that first rotation out of four about a point lower than the athletes from Russia.
After that vault, Biles spoke with her coach and a trainer. She left the competition floor and returned as her teammates were preparing for uneven bars. She has since stood by her team, wearing sweats and cheering them on.
The U.S. women’s gymnastics team is competing in the team finals at the Tokyo Olympics on Tuesday, seeking to bring home the gold for the third time in a row.
This is one of the strongest gymnastics teams the world has seen, led by all-time great Biles and uneven bars phenom Sunisa Lee. The team is rounded out by Jordan Chiles, who’s powerful on floor, and Grace McCallum.
The U.S. has medaled in every women’s gymnastics team event at the Olympics since 1992. That included three golds, two silvers and two bronzes.
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