Simone Biles: Gymnast star pulls out of second Olympic final to 'focus on mental health'

28 July 2021, 08:26

Simone Biles has pulled out from her second event at Tokyo 2020 citing the need to focus on her mental health.
Simone Biles has pulled out from her second event at Tokyo 2020 citing the need to focus on her mental health. Picture: PA

By Joe Cook

US gymnastics star Simone Biles has withdrawn from her second Olympic final in two days, citing the need to "focus on her mental health".

On Wednesday morning US Gymnastics said Biles had "withdrawn from the final individual all-around order to focus on her mental health".

The organisation added: "Simone will continue to be evaluated daily to determine whether or not to participate in next week's individual event finals."

"We wholeheartedly support Simone's decision and applaud her bravery in prioritising her well-being. Her courage shows, yet again, why she is a role model for so many."

Read more: Team GB swimmer Tom Dean becomes Olympic champion after battling Covid twice

Read more: 'Getting jabs will help, not hinder you' as England moves out of lockdown, PM tells LBC

Biles had been looking to defend the gold she won in Rio and become the first gymnast to retain a female all-around title at the Games since Vera Caslavska in 1968.

The 24-year-old, who won four golds in Rio, also withdrew from the women's team final on Tuesday in Tokyo after making a mistake on her opening vault.

Simone Biles uncharacteristically stumbled on her landing after the vault.
Simone Biles uncharacteristically stumbled her landing on the vault. Picture: PA

She later confirmed she was not suffering a physical injury, but had decided to take a step back to "work on my mindfulness" because she feared she would not be able to contribute to her team's pursuit of a third consecutive team gold medal.

The USA team went on to win a silver medal, with the Russian Olympic Committee taking the gold from the Americans for the first time since 2008. Team GB claimed the bronze.

Read more: Simone Biles pulls out of women's team final at Tokyo Olympics citing mental health

Read more: Boris Johnson hints at possible UK-US travel corridor

Tom Dean's family erupt in celebration as he wins gold

In a remarkably honest interview following the competition, Biles said: "It's been really stressful these Olympic Games, not having an audience. It's been a long week, a long Olympic process, a long year.

"We are just a little bit too stressed out. We should be out here having fun.

She added: "I don’t trust myself as much as I used to. I don’t know if it’s age and I’m a little bit more nervous when I do gymnastics.

"I feel like I'm also not having as much fun and this Olympic Games I wanted it to be for myself and it felt like I was still doing for other people. It hurts my heart that doing what I love has been taken away from me to please other people."

More Latest News

See more More Latest News

Parents can apply for the certificate from 9am

'Baby loss certificates' introduced for parents who lose baby before 24 weeks, as ministers consider statutory leave

The UK is set to see more rain on Thursday

Flood warnings as yet more heavy rain brings travel chaos, with 70mph winds battering the coasts

Alabama Frozen Embryos

Hospital pauses IVF in wake of ruling saying frozen embryos are children

The baby's birth certificate was damaged in a passport application

Jewish father whose baby had 'Israel' defaced from baby's birth certificate 'will sue the staff members responsible'

Robin Windsor was 'found dead in a London hotel'

Friends launched frantic three-day hunt for Strictly star Robin Windsor before he 'was found dead in hotel in London'

China San Diego Panda Diplomacy

China plans to send San Diego Zoo more pandas, reigniting panda diplomacy

The baby's birth certificate was damaged in a passport application

Staff members 'sacked' after 'Israel' is scrubbed off Jewish baby's birth certificate on passport application

Barnaby Webber's mother hit out at police who shared details about on her son's death

Police officer who viewed bodycam footage of Barnaby Webber dying in street after Nottingham attack sacked

Lindsay Hoyle apologised to MPs

Commons Speaker fighting for his political life as dozens of MPs call for him to go after sparking chaos over Gaza vote

A bucket rests next to caution tape on a beach in Lauderdale-by-the-Sea, Florida

Girl ‘killed after hole she dug in sand collapsed on Florida beach’

President Joe Biden visits CJ’s Cafe in Los Angeles

Joe Biden cancels student loan debt for 153,000 borrowers


Beyonce becomes first black woman to top Billboard’s country music chart

The logo for Boeing appears on a screen above a trading post on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange

Boeing ousts head of 737 jetliner programme weeks after panel blowout

Fans are livid after the realisation.

'This is the worst day': Cadbury fans left furious after realising Easter chocolate favourite has been discontinued

Court artist sketch of former Honduran president Juan Orlando Hernandez in court

Honduran ex-president on trial in US accused of drugs trafficking

Members of The Eagles, from left, Timothy B Schmit, Don Henley, Glenn Frey and Joe Walsh

Criminal case over handwritten lyrics to Hotel California goes to trial