LONDON -- The story of Gabby Douglas just keeps getting better. Douglas had yet another fantastic meet in the all-around finals, earning an enormous 62.232 to win gold over Russia's Viktoria Komova (61.973).
It was a thrilling competition that came down to the wire: Komova and Douglas both went on floor as their last event, and both hit cold. Douglas performed with an energy and spunk that had the entire arena clapping and screaming. Komova's set was balletic and gorgeously-done as well, but in the end, Douglas held onto the small lead she carried into the final rotation. When the final results were posted, Douglas jumped back onto the podium for a curtain call, waving to the crowd and pointing to her family, who was cheering and waving American flags in the stands.
The bronze medal went to 2010 world all-around champ Aliya Mustafina, who had the highest score of the day on bars (16.100), but fell on an Arabian on beam. Mustafina tied American Aly Raisman in the all-around standings (59.566), but received the lone bronze medal. The tie was broken by eliminating the lowest score and taking the highest combined total of the other three scores (Mustafina had 45.933; Raisman 45.366).
I, for one, think we need to get rid of tie-breakers altogether. Raisman deserved a bronze today as well. It's yet another one of gymnastics' arbitrary rules that cause needless heartache for the gymnasts. (Topping my list is the two-per-country rule.)
Still, it was a great day for US and Russian gymnastics. The top two countries in the world came out on top again, and Douglas becomes the third American Olympic all-around champion in a row. (2008: Nastia Liukin; 2004: Carly Patterson).