Skip to Content

Simone Biles wins 20th world championships gold medal as US women’s gymnastics team takes seventh successive title

<i>Matthias Hangst/Getty Images</i><br/>Biles took a break from competition following Tokyo 2020 after suffering from a mental block.
Matthias Hangst/Getty Images
Biles took a break from competition following Tokyo 2020 after suffering from a mental block.

By Ben Morse, CNN

(CNN) — Simone Biles won her 20th world championships gold medal as the 26-year-old continued her impressive return from a two-year hiatus away from gymnastics, playing a key role in a historic victory for the US in the women’s team final on Wednesday.

Biles’ impressive floor routine ensured the US won its seventh consecutive world title in the women’s team discipline at the World Artistic Gymnastics Championships in Antwerp, Belgium.

Brazil finished second to earn the country’s first ever world championships medal in women’s gymnastics, with France taking third.

Seven-time Olympic medalist Biles was joined by teammates Skye Blakey, Shilese Jones, Joscelyn Roberson and Leanne Wong in the team final. However Roberson, who trains with Biles in Texas, experienced heartbreak in the warmups when she suffered an ankle injury.

Wong filled the void left by Roberson by taking part in the vault and floor, two apparatus the 20-year-old had originally not been expected to compete in.

Biles recorded 14.800 in the vault, 14.466 on the bars and 14.300 on the beam in the first three apparatus.

The 26-year-old was the final member of the US team to compete in the floor section knowing that a big performance would clinch another gold medal for herself and her teammates.

Smiling throughout her routine, Biles oozed confidence as she performed her twists and turns with elan, barely putting a foot wrong, as the judges gave her a score of 15.166.

The US team combined for a total score of 167.729 points, winning by a narrow margin of just 2.199 points.

In a congratulatory message on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter, USA Gymnastics wrote that the US women’s team was in a “league of its own.”

Biles has now won 26 world championship medals – 20 gold, three silver and three bronze.

The American gymnast has now tied Belarusian Vitaly Scherbo with the most overall medals (33) across the Olympics and the world championships.

This has been a momentous event for Biles, returning to the place where she made her world championships debut in 2013, when the American won all-round and floor exercise gold, as well as vault silver and beam bronze.

In the 10 years since, Biles has gone onto become the most decorated gymnast in US history and one of the greats of the sport.

By competing in Antwerp this time around, Biles became the first woman to represent the US at six artistic world championships.

Even before Wednesday’s gold medal, it had already been an impressive competition for Biles, who made history on the opening day of championships.

On Sunday, the American finished first in the women’s all-around qualification and became the first woman to land the Yurchenko double pike vault – a high-difficulty skill historically only done by men – at an international competition.

It is Biles’ first competition back on the world stage since the Tokyo 2020 Games when she pulled out of several events suffering from what is known as the “twisties” – a mental block causing a gymnast to lose track of their positions in midair.

Since then, she has once again displayed all the qualities that have carried her to the pinnacle of the sport, coming back to win a record eighth national all-around title.

Biles will also take part in the women’s individual all-around final on Friday, before the women’s vault and uneven bars finals on October 7 and the balance beam and floor exercise finals the following day.

™ & © 2023 Cable News Network, Inc., a Warner Bros. Discovery Company. All rights reserved.

Article Topic Follows: CNN - Sports

Jump to comments ↓

CNN Newsource


KTVZ NewsChannel 21 is committed to providing a forum for civil and constructive conversation.

Please keep your comments respectful and relevant. You can review our Community Guidelines by clicking here

If you would like to share a story idea, please submit it here.

Skip to content