TOKYO — U.S. gymnast Simone Biles has withdrawn from both finals for the individual vault and the uneven bars at the Tokyo Olympics, Team USA has confirmed.
Biles, who came into the Games as the heavy favorite, has cited her mental health as the reason for her pulling out from several competitions this week.
“She will continue to be evaluated daily to determine whether to compete in the finals for floor exercise and balance beam,” the team said in a statement.
MyKayla Skinner, who failed to qualify for any of the finals, will now take Biles’ spot in the vault final.
The announcement comes after Biles said on Friday she was still suffering from “the twisties”, a mental block in gymnastics where competitors lose track of their positioning while they are still in the air.
Biles shared videos in a series of Instagram posts — which since have been deleted — of herself struggling with dismounts on the uneven bars and falling hard on her back.
She said the videos were taken on Friday morning at practice and in another post said, “it’s honestly petrifying trying to do a skill but not having your mind & body in sync.”
“I chose to not continue team competition in jeopardizing losing a medal (of any color) for the girls / US also for my own safety and health,” Biles said.
Biles has gotten support from several Olympic athletes, including U.S. Olympic swimming legend Michael Phelps.
“We remain in awe of Simone, who continues to handle this situation with courage and grace, and all of the athletes who have stepped up during these unexpected circumstances,” Team USA said in the statement on Friday night.
USA Gymnastics said, Biles “will continue to be evaluated daily to determine whether to compete in the finals for floor exercise and balance beam.”
This is a breaking news story and will be updated as information becomes available.