Biles wins third consecutive world gymnastics title

Olympic all-around champion Gabrielle Douglas of the United States took silver with Larisa Andreea Iordache of Romania taking bronze in Glasgow's Hydro Arena.

Simone Biles becomes the first woman since Russian Svetlana Khorkina to win three all-around titles and first to win three in a row.   -  Getty Images

American teenager Simone Biles tumbled her way into history Wednesday by winning a record third consecutive all-around women's gold at the world gymnastics championships. Olympic all-around champion Gabrielle Douglas of the United States took silver with Larisa Andreea Iordache of Romania taking bronze in Glasgow's Hydro Arena.

It was the 11th world medal — eighth in gold — for the 18-year-old Texan in just her third senior season and second in Glasgow after helping the US defend their team title. She becomes the first woman since Russian Svetlana Khorkina to win three all-around titles and first to win three in a row after Antwerp in 2013 and Nanning in 2014.

Biles, who qualified for the final ahead of European champion Giulia Steingruber, pulled ahead on the first rotation, the vault, scoring 15.833 to lead the Swiss by 0.233 with Douglas third at 0.533. She held her lead after the uneven bars, 14.900, with Douglas moving into second 0.400 behind her teammate by scoring 15.033 on the apparatus.

Biles and Douglas both wobbled on the beam, but each scored 14.400, with Biles holding her 0.400 advantage going into the final rotation the floor. Despite stepping outside the mat the reigning champion delivered an acrobatic routine to score highest 15.266 for an overall 60.399 to finish 0.83 ahead of Douglas 59.316, who also won team gold.

Iordache, last year's world silver medallist, finished third with 59.107, after struggling to 16th in qualifying, with China's Shang Chunsong fourth and Steingruber fifth in the eight-woman final. Biles becomes the US gymnast with the most world medals, overtaking Alicia Sacramone's previous record of ten. She has a chance for further medals as she competes in the finals of the vault, floor and beam later this week.

The competition continues on Friday with Olympic champion Kohei Uchimura bidding for a sixth consecutive men's all-around title after helping Japan win their first team title since 1978 on Wednesday.

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