McKayla Maroney, shown here at the U.S. Gymnastics Trials on July 1, will… (Ronald Martinez / Getty…)
LONDON -- McKayla Maroney, the 16-year-old defending world vault champion from Long Beach, will likely compete in only one event, her specialty, when the U.S. women begin Olympic gymnastics qualifications Sunday.
Maroney said she re-injured a toe she had originally broken before a competition in Chicago two months ago during her first Olympic training session in England last week.
"On my beam routine, my round-off dismount, I split my big right toe," Maroney said Thursday after she only did her vaults during podium training. "It was already broken.... I just split it more. I aggravated an old injury that I did before the Secret Classic [in Chicago], and I did it again before Visa's [the U.S. national championship]. This was the third time I've done it. It looks a lot better now. I'm doing acupuncture and icing it like 30 times a day."
The U.S. women's coordinator said that she probably would have used Maroney on floor exercise as well as vault if the toe hadn't been re-injured but that now it is likely Maroney will only perform two vaults Saturday.
Maroney wasn't the only injured U.S. gymnast.
Alternate Anna Li, the uneven bars specialist from Aurora, Ill., fell during a training session Tuesday and tore a ligament in her neck. She is wearing a cervical collar as a precaution, according to a USA gymnastics spokesman, and is not training any longer as a replacement athlete. Elizabeth Price of Allentown and Sarah Finnegan of St. Louis are still available as alternates.
In Sunday's team qualifications, four athletes compete on each apparatus, and the top three scores count. Kyla Ross, the 15-year-old from Aliso Viejo, confirmed Thursday that she will not do vault in the team competition but is expected to perform on the balance beam, uneven bars and floor exercise.
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