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Biles, Douglas head US gymnastics team for Rio

2016-07-11 13:34
Rio Olympic Games logo (Getty Images)

San Francisco - Three-time world champion Simone Biles and defending Olympic gold medalist Gabby Douglas will spearhead the US women's gymnastics team challenge in Rio despite differing fortunes at the US trials that concluded on Sunday.

Biles, who hasn't lost a competition in more than three years, delivered a dominant performance over two days of competition on Friday and Sunday in San Jose, California, amassing a total of 123.250 points to easily win the all-around title and earn automatic selection to the Olympic team.

Laurie Hernandez, 16, was second with Aly Raisman third and both were also named to the five-woman team, as was Douglas - despite some struggles that saw the 2012 all-around winner finish seventh overall.

Douglas and Raisman - the 2012 floor exercise gold medalist - are the first US women to make back-to-back Olympic teams since 2000.

Douglas, 20, is the first reigning all-around gold medalist to return to the next games since Nadia Comaneci in 1980.

Madison Kocian - who shared uneven bars world championships gold last year - rounded out the team announced by the selection committee headed by US national team coordinator Martha Karolyi.

"Fierce Five, second generation," Biles told an NBC television interviewer of the US squad that will be heavily favored to repeat the team gold they won in London.

Douglas fell in both of her balance beam routines at trials, but she had a leg up with the selectors not only after her 2012 victory but also after a runner-up finish to Biles in the all-around at the world championships last year.

"It's very emotional right now, and even though I had a couple of mistakes on day two, they still trusted and believed in me," Douglas told NBC.

Read more on:    olympics 2016  |  simone biles  |  gymnastics

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