Simone Biles’ decision to drop out of the women’s gymnastics individual all-around competition may have removed some of the star power from the event, but it likely added drama in the race for gold at the Tokyo Olympics.
Angelina Melnikova of the Russian Olympic Committee team comes in as the +105 favorite, according to FanDuel Sportsbook.
Melnikova, Lee have most international success
That puts her just ahead of American Sunisa Lee (+175). While Biles led all gymnasts in qualifying, Lee finished third, while Melnikova finished fourth. Brazil’s Rebeca Andrade (+300) finished second in qualifying, but Melnikova and Lee both have more international success than does Andrade, perhaps giving them the edge heading into Thursday’s competition.
Melnikova won the bronze in the women’s gymnastics all-around at the 2019 World Championships. She also won the all-around gold at the European Games. Lee, meanwhile, earned a silver medal in floor exercise and a bronze in the uneven bars at that same World Championship event. She also beat Biles in the all-around score during the second day of the US Olympic trials.
“I think that gives me a lot of confidence,” Lee said after that meet. “I know it probably won’t happen again … but I was really excited.”
Melnikova came into the Tokyo Olympics with a reputation as Russia’s best all-around hope in women’s gymnastics. She backed that up in the team all-around final, where she finished in the top four in three of the four disciplines (the uneven bars being the exception).
Andrade can make women’s gymnastics history for Brazil
The 22-year-old Andrade has suffered through numerous injuries throughout her career, but she’s a favorite to land Brazil’s first gymnastics medal in the all-around final. Andrade came to Brazil as an individual; the country wasn’t part of the team competition. She won the all-around gold at the 2021 Pan American Championships, earning a bid in Tokyo as a result. The only other Brazilian woman at the competition is Flavia Saraiva, who qualified for the balance beam finals.
While those three are the favorites, there are several other medal threats in the field. Jade Carey, who replaces Simone Biles for the United States in the all-around competition, is fourth on the board with +850 odds to win gold. Carey finished just ninth in the qualifying round, and was set to sit out the all-around because of the limit of two competitors per nation.
|Women’s Gymnastics Odds – Individual All-Around Gold (via DraftKings Sportsbook)|
|Angelina Melnikova (ROC): +105||Sunise Lee (USA): +175|
|Rebeca Andrade (Brazil): +300||Jade Carey (USA): +850|
|Nina Derwael (Belgium): +1000||Xijing Tang (China): +1200|
|Melanie de Jesus dos Santos (France): +1600||Yufei Lu (China): +2800|
Carey earned three silver medals in individual events at the World Championships, and won gold in both the vault and floor exercise at the 2020 World Cup.
Russia’s Vladislava Urazova should also contend for a medal – perhaps even gold – in the women’s gymnastics all-around competition. But bettors won’t be able to back Urazova, as she is just 16 years of age. That makes her the most notable underage contender in the field.