Nastia Liukin‘s dream of competing in the London Olympics came to a heartbreaking end Sunday.
The 22-year-old gymnast fell face down during her uneven bar routine at the U.S. team trials in San Jose, Calif. The 2008 Olympic gold medalist received a standing ovation from fans in the stadium after she picked herself up and finished her routine.
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“Seeing all of the thousands of people on their feet, you couldn’t have planned out a better way to end a career,” Liukin said via The Associated Press.
“Getting up after a fall is never easy,” she explained. “It’s always very tough. It shows your true character if you are able to get up and that’s something I’ve been taught since I was 8 years old.”
Liukin now plans to study sports management at NYC next year and thanked her fans on Twitter for all of their support.
“Thank you to the 18,000 people that gave me a standing ovation tonight. I will remember this moment for the rest of my life,” she tweeted. “Most importantly…Thank you to my parents and special people in my life that always kept me calm, believed in me and shown their love and support. Overwhelmed by the love and support. I would have never imagined anything like this… Thank you, from the bottom of my heart.”
The five women who will represent the U.S. Olympic team at the London Olympic Games later this month are: Gabby Douglas, Jordyn Wieber, Aly Raisman, McKayla Maroney and Kyla Ross.
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