Gymnastics-Record-breaker Biles wins sixth all-around world title


Gymnastics - 2023 World Artistic Gymnastics Championships - Sportpaleis, Antwerp, Belgium - October 6, 2023 Shilese Jones of the U.S. in action on the floor during the women's individual all-around final REUTERS/Yves Herman

ANTWERP, Belgium (Reuters) -American Simone Biles won her sixth all-around title at the Artistic Gymnastics World Championships on Friday to become the most decorated gymnast in the history of the sport.

Biles posted a total of 58.399 after a stellar performance on the vault before she kept up the pressure on the bars before excelling on the beam and despite a stumble on the floor the American nailed her tumbling routine to triumph.

Biles, who won her first all-around world title as a 16-year-old in Antwerp a decade ago, has claimed a total of 27 world medals -- including 21 golds -- having also led the U.S. women's team to a seventh consecutive title on Wednesday.

She has also surpassed Belarusian Vitaly Scherbo's record of 33 medals in total at the Olympics and world championships.

"I was emotional because 10 years (ago) I won my first worlds, now we're back here. So it was emotional," Biles said.

"It means everything to me, the fight, everything that I've put in to get back to this place to feel comfortable and confident enough to compete."

The American, who returned to international competition after a two-year hiatus from the sport to protect her mental health, now has five skills bearing her name, two on floor exercise, two on vault and one on balance beam.

"I'm proud of the work that I've put in to get to this point. I don't think it will hit me until maybe I retire and then look back and see everything that I've done," added Biles.

Former world champion, Brazilian Rebeca Andrade, was second with a total of 56.766 after a superb floor routine. American Shilese Jones completed the podium with a score of 56.332.

Biles is set to compete in the vault and uneven bars finals on Saturday before beam and floor exercise finals on Sunday.

(Reporting by Angelica Medina in Mexico City; Editing by Ken Ferris)

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