The United States outclassed 2008 champions China in women’s gymnastics qualifying at the Olympics on Sunday, but their top name Jordyn Wieber suffered the shock of failing to get through to the all-around final.
Wieber had been the favorite for the individual crown coming into the games after taking the world gold in Tokyo last year, but will now have to be content with trying to win a team medal and the floor title.
Though Wieber finished fourth on Sunday in the all-around standings, led by Russian Victoria Komova, Americans Aly Raisman and Gabby Douglas were above her and each country is allowed no more than two gymnasts in Thursday’s final.
The U.S. team finished a long day of qualifying 1.434 points ahead of Russia, mirroring the men’s team placings on Saturday.
China’s women were a 3.792 behind and Romania a close fourth. The scores, though, will be reset to zero for Tuesday’s team showdown.
The Chinese team, including He Kexin and Deng Linlin, who had helped to win the team gold at the Beijing Games, looked below par.
Beijing gold medalist He finished behind Briton Beth Tweddle on the uneven bars and the team failed to get a gymnast into the top eight of the vault and floor, shutting them out of both apparatus finals.
Yao Jinnan, the world all-around bronze medalist, banged her head and knees in a bad landing from the vault and was bandaged up by her coach.