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World Gymnastics Championships 2019: Biles wins vault to become the joint most decorated gymnast at the world meet

Rudy Martinez
Modified 21 Dec 2019, 00:44 IST

Biles in action on day eight of the Championships.
Biles in action on day eight of the Championships.

Simone Biles was again queen of the vault at the World Gymnastics Championships Saturday afternoon. The American superstar brought her signature “Biles” to win the gold medal in the event final at Hanns-Martin Schleyer-Halle in Germany. Teammate Jade Carey made a move late in the competition to take the silver medal away from Great Britain’s Elissa Downie who ended up with the bronze. With her 23rd world championship medal, Biles becomes the joint-most decorated gymnast (male or female) of all time by tying with Soviet gymnast Vitaly Scherbo who also claimed 23 medals at the worlds.

Becoming the first American since McKayla Maroney to win the vault event twice, Biles's victory on Thursday, winning gold in the all-around made her a shoo-in at the vaults. Both Shallon Olsen of Canada and Alexa Moreno of Mexico, who finished in second and third last time, were back to try and follow the 22-year-old on to the podium for the second year in a row.

The American was second to start on the apparatus and had scores of 15.333 and 15.466 to put her on top of the leader board. Downie moved into second with a comfortable 14.800 but as the middle of the pack came into action, her score came under pressure. Olsen made her run and had two solid vaults but averaged below the Brit by .083 to sit in third.

Moreno followed next but had some mistakes on her first attempt. The difficulty kept her in the mid 14s as her difficulty was above 5.800. Her second scored her a 14.800 gave her a 14.633 putting her out of the running for another bronze. Lilliia Akhaimova of Russia didn’t bring enough to change the leaderboard with her averaging 14.366. Yeo Seojeong of South Korea was last to compete but didn’t bring much to threaten anyone who had already gone scoring a 14.183.

Carey had a chance to get close to Biles scoring a 15.166 on the first attempt but stepped wide out of bounds on her second. Despite the bad landing, she managed to move into second with an overall score of 14.833 carrying the exact difficulty levels as Biles.

Published 12 Oct 2019, 21:47 IST
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