Social media was quickly flooded with posts supporting Simone Biles, after the 24-year-old gymnastics star withdrew from the Tokyo Olympics team finals.
WASHINGTON — Reigning Olympic gymnastics champion Simone Biles withdrew from team finals at the Tokyo Games after a startling moment early in the competition.
USA Gymnastics said in a statement that Biles has “withdrawn from the team final competition due to a medical issue.” Whether she returns for the all-around or individual competitions is up in the air, but the organization said Biles “will be assessed daily to determine medical clearance for future competitions,” the statement read.
Jordan Chiles, Grace McCallum and Suni Lee went on to represent the U.S. in the teams competition.
Biles’ exit shocked those following along in the U.S. and around the world.
Social media was quickly flooded with posts supporting the 24-year-old star.
Three-time Olympic gold medalist Aly Raisman said she felt sick to her stomach.
“It’s just, it’s horrible. You know, I know that all of these athletes dream of this moment for their whole entire lives and so I’m just completely devastated, I am obviously so worried and just hoping that Simone is okay. And I’m also just thinking of the mental impact this has to have on Simone, it’s just so much pressure and I’ve been watching how much pressure has been on her the months leading up to the games, it’s just devastating I feel horrible,” Raisman told TODAY.
AP reporter Will Graves reminded people how Biles competed in 2018 with a kidney stone saying, “as great as she is, her toughness might be even better.”
“To do what she’s done at this level for 8 years is incredible. Appreciate that no matter where this goes. Full stop,” Graves added.
Talk show host Andy Cohen tweeted his support, saying “We love you @Simone_Biles !!!”
ESPN’s Myron Medcalf said: “We will not accept any negativity or insensitivity about Simone Biles. None. Zero.”
Laurie Hernandez, who won gold alongside Biles at the Rio Olympics, gave a special shout out to the other members of the team who stepped up when Biles had to withdraw.
Minnesota Timberwolves star Karl-Anthony Towns said he was sending “nothing but love and positivity” to the G.O.A.T.
Suni Lee, who is competing alongside Biles, said she’s “never been prouder to be apart of such an amazing team with an amazing group of girls. we stepped up when we needed to and did this for ourselves. we do not owe anyone a gold medal, we are WINNERS in our hearts.”