MONTREAL, October 3, 2017 - Two-time Olympic and six-time World All-around champion Kohei Uchimura was forced to abandon his quest for a seventh consecutive World title during qualification Monday evening after injuring his left ankle at the Artistic World Championships in Montreal.
Uchimura, who began his competition on Rings, visibly hurt himself landing his vault, limping as he left the podium. He nonetheless performed on Parallel Bars before renouncing Horizontal Bar.
Uchimura's withdrawal means a new World champion will be crowned in Thursday's All-around final for the first time since 2009. That was the year Uchimura took his first World title, the beginning of an unparalleled winning streak: for the past eight years, he has captured all major titles in the individual All-around.
The Japanese gymnast, who counts 19 World and seven Olympic medals among his collection, came to Montreal as the World titleholder on Horizontal Bar as well.
At the end of the first day of qualifications, Cuba's Manrique Larduet, the 2015 World All-around silver medallist, holds the lead, followed by China's Xiao Ruoteng and Russia's David Belyavskiy. Japan's Kenzo Shirai and Ukrainian Oleg Verniaiev, the 2016 Olympic All-around silver medallist, round out the top five.
Men's qualification ends Tuesday after the fourth and final subdivision.