Rebeca Andrade of Brazil Wins Women’s Vault Gold in Gymnastics

Rebeca Andrade of Brazil Wins Women’s Vault Gold in Gymnastics
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Rebeca Andrade of Brazil Wins Women’s Vault Gold in Gymnastics

Rebeca Andrade of Brazil Wins Women’s Vault Gold in Gymnastics

With two high-flying jumps that made the movements complicated and gravity-defying straightforward, Rebeca Andrade won Sunday’s vault final at the Tokyo Games, bringing Brazil their first gold in women’s gymnastics.

Its Olympics just keep getting better.

Last week in the all-around final 22-year-old Andrade won the silver medal, finishing just behind American Sunisa Lee. She dedicated this silver medal, the first Olympic medal of any color for Brazil in women’s gymnastics, to her country, coaches and medical staff, who had helped her get to these Games after a new serious injury to the right knee.

Andrade won with a score of 15.083 points. MyKayla Skinner of the United States, who is retiring after these Olympics, was second for the silver medal. Yeo Seo-jeong won bronze for South Korea and is South Korea’s first medalist in women’s gymnastics.

In 2019, Andrade needed his third surgery in four years to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee and missed the world championships because of it. Without her, her Brazilian team did not qualify for Tokyo. And she only qualified for these Games in June, as an individual.

That last-minute effort to compete in Tokyo was worth it: Andrade’s best performance at his last Olympics, the Rio 2016 Games, was 11th in the all-around.

His first of two jumps was a Cheng, which is a flare on the springboard, a U-turn on the jump and a forward layout with 1 ½ turns. His second was an Amanar, which is a flare on the springboard, a back hand jump on the jump and a back layout with 2 ½ twists. She was also unsuccessful on the landing, but her execution and size helped her achieve high scores.

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With Simone Biles out of competition with a mental health issue, Andrade’s toughest competition in the vault was two Americans: Jade Carey and Skinner.

Carey, who finished second in jump qualifying last week, appeared to adjust her momentum on her first jump – which was supposed to be a Cheng, but she ended up doing it and only completed a Yurchenko pullback. , which is a somersault. without twists and turns. Stunned and almost in tears, she kept her cool long enough to perform a second jump, but that landing was a big step towards him. Her overall score, 12.416 points, excluded her from medals.

Skinner was just as stunned, but the other way around. Last week after qualifying, she thought her Olympics were over – and her career was over – when she finished fourth in vault. Because only two gymnasts per country qualify for the all-around finals and each apparatus, she was excluded from the finals after Biles and Carey finished ahead of her in qualifying.

In an Instagram post, Skinner, who is 24 and was an alternate at the Rio de Janeiro Games in 2016, said she was heartbroken at the way these Olympics turned out for her.

“That closes the book on my gymnastic career, and my only regrets were things out of my control. So no regrets, “she wrote.” For now, I’ll just try to fill the hole in my heart. “

But on Saturday, when Biles pulled out of the vault, Skinner got the chance to dress one last time in her competition leotard and see if she could win.

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She posted on Instagram again, “Do this for us @Simone_Biles. … It’s time baby!

Finally, Skinner – who Lee called the team’s “grandmother” because she has so much experience on the national team – will return home to Arizona with a long-awaited Olympic medal around her neck.

Maggie Astor contributed reports.

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