TOKYO — Simone Biles will not compete in Thursday’s all-around competition, where she was expected to defend the gold medal she won at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro games.
On Tuesday, the decorated 24-year-old American took herself out of Tuesday’s team competition after a single rotation, citing an inability to focus due to mental health issues.
USA Gymnastics announced on Wednesday afternoon here that she will sit out the all-around as well.
“After further medical evaluation, Simone Biles has withdrawn from the final individual all-around competition at the Tokyo Olympic Games, in order to focus on her mental health,” the statement read.
Biles, who had qualified first overall on Sunday, will be replaced by Jade Carey, who came in ninth overall. Sunisa Lee, who qualified third, will join Carey.
It is not determined if Biles will return for any of the four individual finals that she qualified for — vault, balance beam, uneven bars or floor.
“Simone will continue to be evaluated daily to determine whether or not to participate in next week’s event finals,” USAG said.
Tuesday, after leaving the team event, Biles stated she was “still struggling with some things” and was having trouble dealing with outside expectations and opinions. She thought she had her mental health under control, but arriving at the Olympics altered things.
“I felt pretty comfortable coming into the Olympic Games and then I don’t know what happened,” Biles said. “Just going through each of the days and the training it just felt a little bit tougher.”
The issue prevented Biles from being able to focus mentally on the complex aspects of her routine. On Tuesday she attempted a vault only to lose track of where she was in the air and needed remarkable physical control to avoid injury.
Vault is usually her strongest event, but she scored fourth-lowest in the competition. She removed herself soon, explaining she didn't want to further damage the American team’s score. They went on to win silver.
She didn’t promise a return or rule out outright retirement, only saying she would take things “one day at a time” and “see what happens.”
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