Artistic Gymnastics

Biles overcomes beam wobble to win her season opener in Stuttgart

Despite being below her best, four-time Olympic champion Simone Biles did enough to win her first All-Around World Cup event with Aliya Mustafina fifth.

Simone Biles started her 2019 season with victory in the All-Around World Cup in Stuttgart.

Competing in the German city which will host October's World Championships, the four-time Olympic champion received a rapturous welcome from the 5,000-capacity crowd inside the Porsche Arena.

And her first discipline, the vault, was the highlight as she totalled 58.800 points to take the win ahead of Canada's Ana Padurariu and home favourite Elisabeth Seitz.

Twice Olympic all-around bronze medallist and double uneven bars champion Aliya Mustafina was down in fifth place.

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Talking to Olympic Channel on Saturday, Biles admitted that she had not been in the gym as much as she had wanted to in recent weeks.

The American also said that she had downgraded some of her routines, and that she was not expecting "too too much" from herself in Stuttgart.

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But she made a powerful start on the vault, one of the two individual apparatus in which she is the defending world and Olympic champion.

She nailed a Cheng to score 15.400, a massive 0.900 clear of Seitz.

Biles was less fluid on the uneven bars, but her mark of 14.300 was again the best in the field ahead of Seitz and Mustafina.

Simone Biles competing on the uneven bars in the All-Around World Cup in Stuttgart

The third rotation was the 14-time world champion's weakest with one big wobble on the balance beam resulting in a huge 'Oooooooh' from the crowd.

But she managed to stay on and her 14.200 was second behind world silver medallist Padurariu who scored 14.333.

At last year's Worlds in Doha, Biles took bronze behind Padurariu and China's Liu Tingting.

With Mustafina struggling badly on the beam with 11.600, and Seitz also below par (12.466), Padurariu moved up to second.

The Russian found some form on the floor, gaining a warm ovation from the crowd as she scored 13.200 for a total of 53.400 and fifth place.

Aliya Mustafina thanks the crowd after her floor routine at the All-Around World Cup in Stuttgart

Seitz and Padurariu matched that score with the 16-year-old from Ontario securing second place and a big personal best total of 55.132.

But there was to be no denying Biles in the event she has dominated for the past six years, winning four world titles and an Olympic gold medal.

The 22-year-old scored 14.900 to win comfortably with 58.800, finishing more than three and a half points clear of her rivals.