Melnikova clinched an historic gold medal in the women’s all-around event earlier in the week at the Artistic Gymnastics World Championships in Kitakyushu, Japan, ending the decade-long dominance of American athletes.
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The 21-year-old star – representing the Russian Gymnastics Federation – seemed set to add another title to her impressive collection when she sat top of the leaderboard in the floor exercise event on Sunday with a score of 14.000.
Japanese rival Murakami appeared to have fallen short when she posted 13.966, just shy of Melnikova’s tally, with America’s Leanne Wong in bronze on 13.833 for her routine.
But the Japanese team filed an appeal, feeling that the 25-year-old Murakami had been treated harshly with the scoring.
Murakami’s score was subsequently bumped up by 0.100, moving her to 14.066 and putting her ahead of Melnikova.
Meanwhile, Russian appeals regarding the judging for Melnikova were reportedly rejected.
“I’m hugely disappointed,” Melnikova told TASS.
“I’ve never in my life had problems with the turn which wasn’t counted for me. We filed a protest, but it wasn’t accepted.”
Melnikova also took to Instagram, where she suggested her first turn had not been credited.
“What they replied in response to the appeal, I won’t even say, because it was awful,” said the star.
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