Ariake Gymnastics Centre, Tokyo (CNN)After a turbulent few years, Sunisa Lee can now call herself an Olympic gold medalist.

The American gymnast won the women’s all-around title in Tokyo on Thursday ahead of Brazil’s Rebeca Andrade in second and the Russian Olympic Committee’s Angelina Melnikova in third.Lee, who extends the USA’s run of Olympic gold medals in the event to five, scored 57.433 as teammate and 2016 all-around champion Simone Biles watched on from the stands. Given what Lee has experienced over the past two years, no wonder the word she twice landed on to describe her victory was “surreal.”In 2019, she won gold on uneven bars at the US Championships shortly after her father had fallen off a ladder and become paralyzed from the chest down, while last year she lost her aunt and uncle to Covid-19.Read MoreLee, who turned 18 in March, has also overcome a spate of injuries, including a broken bone in her foot and an Achilles tendon injury last year. US gymnast Sunisa "Suni" Lee competes on the balance beam during the individual all-around final on Thursday, July 29.US gymnast Sunisa "Suni" Lee competes on the balance beam during the individual all-around final on Thursday, July 29. Photos: Suni Lee wins gymnastics goldUS gymnast Sunisa “Suni” Lee competes on the balance beam during the individual all-around final on Thursday, July 29.Hide Caption 1 of 19Lee is congratulated by teammate Jade Carey after winning the gold.Lee is congratulated by teammate Jade Carey after winning the gold. Photos: Suni Lee wins gymnastics goldLee is congratulated by teammate Jade Carey after winning the gold.Hide Caption 2 of 19Lee takes a selfie with silver medalist Rebeca Andrade, center, and bronze medalist Angelina Melnikova. Andrade is the first Brazilian to ever medal in women's gymnastics. Melnikova is Russian.Lee takes a selfie with silver medalist Rebeca Andrade, center, and bronze medalist Angelina Melnikova. Andrade is the first Brazilian to ever medal in women's gymnastics. Melnikova is Russian. Photos: Suni Lee wins gymnastics goldLee takes a selfie with silver medalist Rebeca Andrade, center, and bronze medalist Angelina Melnikova. Andrade is the first Brazilian to ever medal in women’s gymnastics. Melnikova is Russian.Hide Caption 3 of 19Lee started her day on the vault, where she put up the field's fifth-best score.Lee started her day on the vault, where she put up the field's fifth-best score. Photos: Suni Lee wins gymnastics goldLee started her day on the vault, where she put up the field’s fifth-best score.Hide Caption 4 of 19An overhead shot of Lee on the uneven bars.An overhead shot of Lee on the uneven bars. Photos: Suni Lee wins gymnastics goldAn overhead shot of Lee on the uneven bars.Hide Caption 5 of 19Lee celebrates after her performance on the uneven bars. Lee had the best score on that apparatus.Lee celebrates after her performance on the uneven bars. Lee had the best score on that apparatus. Photos: Suni Lee wins gymnastics goldLee celebrates after her performance on the uneven bars. Lee had the best score on that apparatus.Hide Caption 6 of 19Lee soars in the air during the uneven bars.Lee soars in the air during the uneven bars. Photos: Suni Lee wins gymnastics goldLee soars in the air during the uneven bars.Hide Caption 7 of 19Lee talks to her teammate Jade Carey during the competition. Carey finished in eighth place.Lee talks to her teammate Jade Carey during the competition. Carey finished in eighth place. Photos: Suni Lee wins gymnastics goldLee talks to her teammate Jade Carey during the competition. Carey finished in eighth place.Hide Caption 8 of 19Lee performs on the balance beam during the third rotation. She put up the field's second-best score on the beam.Lee performs on the balance beam during the third rotation. She put up the field's second-best score on the beam. Photos: Suni Lee wins gymnastics goldLee performs on the balance beam during the third rotation. She put up the field’s second-best score on the beam.Hide Caption 9 of 19Lee was in first place heading to the floor exercise on the final rotation.Lee was in first place heading to the floor exercise on the final rotation. Photos: Suni Lee wins gymnastics goldLee was in first place heading to the floor exercise on the final rotation.Hide Caption 10 of 19Lee put up the field's fifth-best score on the floor exercise, and it was enough to hold onto the lead.Lee put up the field's fifth-best score on the floor exercise, and it was enough to hold onto the lead. Photos: Suni Lee wins gymnastics goldLee put up the field’s fifth-best score on the floor exercise, and it was enough to hold onto the lead.Hide Caption 11 of 19Lee congratulates Brazil's Rebeca Andrade after the floor exercise. Andrade had a chance to overtake Lee at the end, but she stepped out of bounds twice during her floor routine.Lee congratulates Brazil's Rebeca Andrade after the floor exercise. Andrade had a chance to overtake Lee at the end, but she stepped out of bounds twice during her floor routine. Photos: Suni Lee wins gymnastics goldLee congratulates Brazil’s Rebeca Andrade after the floor exercise. Andrade had a chance to overtake Lee at the end, but she stepped out of bounds twice during her floor routine.Hide Caption 12 of 19Lee twists in the air during her floor exercise routine.Lee twists in the air during her floor exercise routine. Photos: Suni Lee wins gymnastics goldLee twists in the air during her floor exercise routine.Hide Caption 13 of 19From left, US gymnasts Riley McCusker, Jordan Chiles, Simone Biles and MyKayla Skinner cheer for Lee after her gold-medal performance. Biles, the defending champion, withdrew from the event because of mental-health concerns.From left, US gymnasts Riley McCusker, Jordan Chiles, Simone Biles and MyKayla Skinner cheer for Lee after her gold-medal performance. Biles, the defending champion, withdrew from the event because of mental-health concerns. Photos: Suni Lee wins gymnastics goldFrom left, US gymnasts Riley McCusker, Jordan Chiles, Simone Biles and MyKayla Skinner cheer for Lee after her gold-medal performance. Biles, the defending champion, withdrew from the event because of mental-health concerns.Hide Caption 14 of 19Lee hugs Jade Carey after it was clear she had won gold.Lee hugs Jade Carey after it was clear she had won gold. Photos: Suni Lee wins gymnastics goldLee hugs Jade Carey after it was clear she had won gold.Hide Caption 15 of 19Shyenne Lee, Lee's sister, celebrates at a watch party in Oakdale, Minnesota.Shyenne Lee, Lee's sister, celebrates at a watch party in Oakdale, Minnesota. Photos: Suni Lee wins gymnastics goldShyenne Lee, Lee’s sister, celebrates at a watch party in Oakdale, Minnesota.Hide Caption 16 of 19Lee, 18, is the first Hmong-American to compete as an Olympic gymnast.Lee, 18, is the first Hmong-American to compete as an Olympic gymnast. Photos: Suni Lee wins gymnastics goldLee, 18, is the first Hmong-American to compete as an Olympic gymnast.Hide Caption 17 of 19Lee's parents, Yeev Thoj and John Lee, react while watching their daughter from Oakdale, Minnesota. In 2019, John Lee <a href="https://edition.cnn.com/world/live-news/tokyo-2020-olympics-07-28-21-spt/h_6d5e826fde8fb1a00b3882bd012f5596" target="_blank">suffered an accident</a> that left him paralyzed.Lee's parents, Yeev Thoj and John Lee, react while watching their daughter from Oakdale, Minnesota. In 2019, John Lee <a href="https://edition.cnn.com/world/live-news/tokyo-2020-olympics-07-28-21-spt/h_6d5e826fde8fb1a00b3882bd012f5596" target="_blank">suffered an accident</a> that left him paralyzed. Photos: Suni Lee wins gymnastics goldLee’s parents, Yeev Thoj and John Lee, react while watching their daughter from Oakdale, Minnesota. In 2019, John Lee suffered an accident that left him paralyzed.Hide Caption 18 of 19Lee poses with her gold medal on the podium.Lee poses with her gold medal on the podium. Photos: Suni Lee wins gymnastics goldLee poses with her gold medal on the podium.Hide Caption 19 of 1929b sunisa lee olympics 2020 unf25 sunisa lee olympics 2020 unf20 sunisa lee olympics 2020 unf16 sunisa lee olympics 2020 unf RESTRICTED05 sunisa lee olympics 2020 unf09 sunisa lee olympics 2020 unf10 sunisa lee olympics 2020 unf07 sunisa lee olympics 2020 unf27 sunisa lee olympics 2020 unf03 sunisa lee olympics 2020 unf23 sunisa lee olympics 2020 unf02 sunisa lee olympics 2020 unf12 sunisa lee olympics 2020 unf15 sunisa lee olympics 2020 unf17 sunisa lee olympics 2020 unf14 sunisa lee olympics 2020 unf13 sunisa lee olympics 2020 unf28 sunisa lee olympics 2020 unf26 sunisa lee olympics 2020 unf“The past two years have been absolutely crazy with Covid and my family and everything else,” Lee told reporters at the Ariake Gymnastics Centre. “This medal definitely means a lot to me because there was a point in time when I wanted to quit and I just didn’t think I would ever be here, including injuries and stuff.”So there are a lot of emotions, but I’m definitely super proud of myself for sticking with it and believing in myself.”Much of the build-up to the final had been dominated by Biles’ withdrawal from the event to protect her mental health. Biles, a four-time Olympic gold medalist, had pulled out of the team competition earlier this week after landing awkwardly on her vault. Alongside teammate and close friend Jordan Chiles, Biles was there cheering and clapping Lee and Team USA’s Jade Carey from the stands.From left, US gymnasts Riley McCusker, Jordan Chiles, Simone Biles and MyKayla Skinner cheer for teammate Suni Lee after her gold-medal performance.From left, US gymnasts Riley McCusker, Jordan Chiles, Simone Biles and MyKayla Skinner cheer for teammate Suni Lee after her gold-medal performance.From left, US gymnasts Riley McCusker, Jordan Chiles, Simone Biles and MyKayla Skinner cheer for teammate Suni Lee after her gold-medal performance.The gold medal adds to the silver Lee won with Team USA in the team competition on Tuesday, and her victory means the US draws level with the Soviet Union with a record six wins in the women’s all-around.Lee started the evening with a score of 14.600 on vault before moving into the medal positions with 15.300 on uneven bars. Her 13.833 on balance beam handed her the lead over Andrade, and the Brazilian then stepped out twice on her floor routine to end her hopes of a gold.”I was starting to put a little bit too much pressure on myself,” said Lee. “Knowing that Simone was gone, I feel like people kind of put that pressure on me that I had to come back with a medal. “I tried not to think about … (and) just focus on myself and do what I normally do because that’s when I compete the best.”Andrade, meanwhile, has her own reasons to be proud as she becomes the first woman from Brazil to win an Olympic gymnastics medal.Andrade, seen competing on balance beam during the all-around final, secured an historic medal for Brazil.Andrade, seen competing on balance beam during the all-around final, secured an historic medal for Brazil.Andrade, seen competing on balance beam during the all-around final, secured an historic medal for Brazil.She qualified second for the event — behind Biles and ahead of Lee — and scored highly on vault and bars in the final. But it was Lee who took the lead on the third rotation.”I did my best and I’m very proud of the outcome,” said Andrade. “I worked hard, I worked with my psychologist to achieve these objectives … I don’t mind if it’s gold, silver, or bronze, or even if I didn’t have any medal. I think I had a great performance and I’m very thankful for that.”For Melnikova, her bronze medal adds to the gold she won with the ROC earlier this week.”I am extremely happy. It has been a hard road to get here. All my dreams came true,” she said. “I basically worked for it five years and I didn’t miss any major competition in all those five years.”Following the team and all-around events, women’s artisitc gymnastic competitions resume in Tokyo on Sunday with the vault and uneven bars events.

Source Link:
https://www.cnn.com/2021/07/29/sport/sunisa-lee-tokyo-olympics-gymnastics-spt-intl/index.html

400 Bad Request

Bad Request

Your browser sent a request that this server could not understand.
Size of a request header field exceeds server limit.

Comments

comments

Advertisement