Simone Biles pulls out of Olympic all-around competition

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Simone Biles, of the United States, waits to perform on the vault during the artistic gymnastics women’s final at the Summer Olympics, Tuesday, July 27, 2021, in Tokyo. The American gymnastics superstar has withdrawn the all-around competition to focus on her mental well-being. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)

Tokyo (CBS NEWS) — American gymnastics superstar and defending champion Simone Biles removed herself from Thursday’s all-around competition to focus on her mental well-being, USA Gymnastics said.

The organization said in a statement Wednesday that “after further medical evaluation,” Biles, 24, decided not to take part “in order to focus on her mental health.”

“We wholeheartedly support Simone’s decision and applaud her bravery in prioritizing her well-being. Her courage shows, yet again, why she is a role model for so many,” USA Gymnastics said.

The statement said she’ll “continue to be evaluated daily to determine whether or not to participate in next week’s individual event finals.”

The decision comes a day after Biles removed herself from the team final following one rotation because she felt she wasn’t mentally ready.

Jade Carey, who finished ninth in qualifying, will take Biles’ place in the all-around. Carey didn’t qualify at first because she was the third-ranking American behind Biles and Sunisa Lee. International Gymnastics Federation rules keep countries form using more than two athletes per event in the finals.

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