Black finishes fourth in women's balance beam
Canadian gymnast Ellie Black, from Halifax, fights to keep her balance during competition in the balance beam final at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, Tuesday, August 3, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Donna Spencer, The Canadian Press
Published Tuesday, August 3, 2021 7:56AM EDT
Last Updated Tuesday, August 3, 2021 7:57AM EDT
TOKYO -- Ellie Black just missed a first Olympic medal in women's artistic gymnastics for Canada when she finished fourth in women's beam Tuesday.
Black's score of 13.866 points tied Sunisa Lee of the United States, but Black ranked higher because of a better execution score.
Black competed with a sprained ankle that forced the 25-year-old from Halifax to withdraw from last week's all-around final in Tokyo.
Simone Biles of the U.S. won bronze with a score of 14 for the seventh Olympic medal of her career. Biles competed in her first final in Tokyo after pulling out of the team and all-around events to focus on her mental health.
China took gold and silver with Guan Chenchen earning 14.633 and Tang Xijing finishing with 14.233.
Black had aggravated a previous ankle injury dismounting from the beam during training a week earlier.
She completed difficult elements in her final routine with a few wobbles, but stuck her landing. Black then hugged her coach David Kikuchi and wept.
"Obviously coming fourth is hard, but to be able to compete and take part in the final and hit my beam routine, I'm very, very happy with that," Black said.
Kyle Shewfelt was the first Canadian to win a medal of any colour in artistic gymnastics when he claimed men's floor exercise gold in 2004.
Black's challenge in Tokyo was her sprained left ankle.
With it wrapped in tape, the Canadian was among the last women to warm up 90 minutes before the final.
She gingerly worked the beam in practice without attempting any aerial elements.
After executing a couple handsprings on the floor, Black stood at the edge of the mat staring at the apparatus and visualizing her routine.
Black was a silver medallist in the all-around at the 2017 world championship.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 3, 2021.