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Gabby Douglas Battles COVID Ahead Of Gymnastics Return

The gymnast has been met with another setback after testing positive for COVID. She promised fans, "I'll see you guys soon."

Just days before her highly anticipated return to competition, gymnast Gabby Douglas shared the crushing news that a positive COVID-19 test will prevent her from making her comeback debut this weekend.

“I’m so sad to say I won’t be competing this weekend. I was so excited to get back on the competition floor, but unfortunately, I just tested positive for COVID,” Douglas posted on Instagram.

According to Today, the Feb. 24 event would have marked the first elite meet for the 28-year-old gymnast since the 2016 Rio Games. Douglas was slated to face Olympic champion Sunisa Lee for the first time in Saturday’s Winter Cup and compete in three events – vault, beam, and floor exercise.

Douglas first revealed her comeback plans earlier this month during an interview on Hallie Jackson NOW. She explained, “I didn’t want to end this sport how I did in 2016. I wanted to take a step back and work on my mental state…I never wanted to walk away on a bad day.” She initially teased her return in July 2023 through social media, according to BLACK ENTERPRISE. The athlete shared several photos of herself leaping through the air, followed by a video of her training on bars, simply captioned: “loading.”

Douglas clinched her third Olympic gold as part of the U.S. women’s team victory at the 2016 Rio Games, Today noted. She etched her name in history at the 2012 London Games as the first Black athlete to capture the Olympic all-around gold title. While the gold medalist never formally retired after Rio, she did not vie for a spot at the 2020 Tokyo Games.

If named to the 2024 Paris team, she will become the first American woman since gymnast Dominique Dawes to make three Olympic squads.

Having faced injuries, setbacks, and now COVID, the gymnast’s journey reflects the ongoing challenges athletes endure. “I’ll see you guys soon,” the icon promised to followers, despite the difficult news.

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