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Three-time Olympic champion Gabby Douglas ‘crushed’ after gymnastics return halted by positive Covid-19 test

Three-time Olympic champion Gabby Douglas’ return to competitive gymnastics – originally set for this weekend – will have to wait, after the American tested positive for Covid-19.

Douglas last competed almost eight years ago at the Rio Olympics, but announced her intention to return to the sport in an Instagram post last year.

She was due to make her much-anticipated return in this weekend’s Winter Cup in Kentucky, but announced on social media that she had to pull out after testing positive for Covid-19.

“I’m so sad to say that I won’t be competing this weekend,” she wrote on Instagram Thursday, wishing her fellow competitors good luck.

“I was so excited to get back out on the competition floor, but unfortunately, I just tested positive for Covid.

“Thank you so much of all your support and positive energy – it really does mean the world to me. I’m crushed but I’ll see you guys soon!”

Douglas competes on the uneven bars during the 2016 US Olympic team trials. - Ronald Martinez/Getty Images
Douglas competes on the uneven bars during the 2016 US Olympic team trials. - Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Douglas won two golds during her Olympic debut in 2012, including in the all-around event, and added a team gold at the Rio Games in 2016.

The 28-year-old has spoken openly about being disappointed with her performance in Rio and has since said she didn’t want to leave the sport on that note.

She kept a low-profile since the 2016 Games, taking a break from social media to do some “soul searching.”

Hinting at her comeback in July last year, Douglas said she was aware how much work she had to do, but added she was “beyond grateful and excited” to get back to the sport she loves.

Douglas was due to compete in three disciplines at this weekend’s meet: the beam, floor and vault.

The competition is the first event of the year and the first step for athletes towards Paris 2024.

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