BEIJING, Aug. 7, 2008 — Morgan Hamm of Waukesha, Wis., today informed USA Gymnastics and the U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC) that he was withdrawing from the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team for medical reasons. Hamm has been battling a left ankle injury, and at this time, he believes it is in the best interests of the team to allow another gymnast to represent the USA in the Olympic Games. The men’s selection committee is in the process of identifying who will replace Hamm.
" I have been dealing with this for the last year, and it recently has gotten worse here in Beijing," said Hamm, a two-time Olympian. " Right now I am unable to perform my tumbling skills at the level that I need to. This has an impact on my ability to contribute to the team’s goals and I believe by continuing I would be putting myself at further risk. There are two very capable athletes who can step in and help this team more than I can right now."
" Morgan’s dedication to helping the USA claim a team medal for the second straight Olympics has been exemplary," said Steve Penny, president of USA Gymnastics. "He has done every thing he could to contribute to this team, and we appreciate his efforts. We also appreciate his putting the team’s best interests first. He has once again demonstrated why he is a champion."