Simone Biles marked her triumphant return to international gymnastics by clinching her 20th world title and guiding the United States women’s team to their seventh consecutive gold at the Artistic Gymnastics World Championships in Antwerp on Wednesday.

Biles, at the age of 26, showcased her leadership and skill, earning a total team score of 167.729, with a standout floor routine that secured her a 15.166. 

The remarkable performance also earned her the distinction of having the most world medals ever, with a record-breaking 26 medals.

Reflecting on the team’s victory, Biles expressed her pride, stating, “It’s crazy, we still pulled it out, I’m really proud of the team.” She emphasized the significance of the win, especially for some teammates who were experiencing their first World Championship.

The USA’s dominance in women’s gymnastics has persisted since 2011, with Russia being the last team to challenge their supremacy. With Russia absent, Biles led her team to yet another resounding victory.

Despite her incredible achievements, Biles acknowledged the challenges that come with age and experience. “I’m not 16 anymore, I’m 26, like everything feels different,” she noted. “Staying at the top and just pushing day in, day out is a little bit harder because I’m older, my body is tired.”

In a testament to her enduring greatness, Biles didn’t even need to perform her signature Yurchenko double pike, which now bears her name. Her Cheng was executed flawlessly, setting the tone for the American team’s success.

Brazil secured second place with a score of 165.530, largely led by the impressive performance of 24-year-old Rebeca Andrade, the reigning all-around world champion. 

Meanwhile, France captured the bronze medal with a total score of 164.064, propelled by strong routines on the balance beam and vault, particularly by Melanie De Jesus Dos Santos, who trains alongside Biles in the United States.


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2023-10-05

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