Gymnastics: Fame may be fleeting but Douglas golden again

Tue Aug 9, 2016 9:04pm EDT
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By Steve Keating

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) - In the world of elite women's gymnastics, where careers often last as long as the Olympic flame, American Gabby Douglas serves as reminder that fame can indeed be fleeting.

Douglas was the toast of the London Games when she lead the United States to the team title.

On Tuesday, however, she spent much of her time as a cheerleader, competing in just one of four apparatus as Simone Biles led the U.S. charge to a second straight title.

Douglas's reign as all around champion is also set to come to an end having failed to even qualify for a chance to defend her crown, which is widely expected to be placed on Biles' head.

Still there was history to be made in Rio on Tuesday as Douglas and team mate Aly Raisman became the first Americans to win back-to-back Olympic team titles, and that, the 21-year-old said, was something to cheer about.

"It was fine, when I was watching I wanted to encourage the girls as much as I can and when I was competing just contribute to Team USA as best as I could," said Douglas.

"It's just so special to have this bond with these girls and we all put in so much hard work so when the outcome is great you feel you accomplished something.

"It feels amazing especially to be alongside Aly we did this again and history again. It is just phenomenal."   Continued...

2016 Rio Olympics - Artistic Gymnastics - Final - Women's Team Final - Rio Olympic Arena - Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 09/08/2016. Gabrielle Douglas (USA) of USA (Gabby Douglas) competes on the uneven bars during the women's team final.  REUTERS/Mike Blake