Biles wins Olympics bronze in emotional return

Written by on August 3, 2021

Simone Biles won bronze in the beam final at the Tokyo Games in an emotional return to the Olympic gymnastics competition.

The American had not competed since last week’s team final, where she performed on the vault but no other apparatus before saying she wanted to protect her mental health.

Biles said she was suffering with the ‘twisties’ which gymnasts describe as a kind of mental block, moving her to pull out of the all-around, vault, floor and uneven bars.

The 24-year-old jumped up and down and hugged her rivals after scoring 14.000 with a solid routine which ended with a double backward somersault and double pike onto the mat and initially placed her in second place before Chinese gymnast, Tang Xijing, scored 14.233 and moved her down to third place.

China’s 16 year old competitor Guan Chenchen scored 14.633 to win gold, with a difficult routine that was executed with grace. For Guan, who lists Biles as her sporting idol and her 18 year old compatriot Tang Xijing, these are their first medals at the Olympics.

Biles, who performed third of the eight finalists, faced a nervous wait before securing the bronze. It is her seventh Olympic medal in total, making her the joint-most decorated American gymnast in history alongside Shannon Miller.

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