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Steele Johnson, Olympic diving medalist, withdraws during Olympic Trials

Steele Johnson

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - AUGUST 19: Steele Johnson of the United States competes during the Diving Men’s 10m Platform Preliminary on Day 14 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at the Maria Lenk Aquatics Centre on August 19, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

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Steele Johnson, a Rio Olympic diving silver medalist, withdrew from the U.S. Olympic Trials after the semifinal round of his first event, citing a right foot injury.

Johnson, who took silver with David Boudia in synchronized platform in 2016, was in third place with Boudia in the synchro springboard going into Friday night’s finals in Indianapolis, where the winning team clinches an Olympic spot.

Johnson, 24, was also entered in the individual springboard that starts Wednesday (as is Boudia).

“I’ve endured 2 failed surgeries, years on and off of crutches and have pushed as hard as I physically can, but unfortunately my foot is in too much pain to continue competing at Trials,” was posted on Johnson’s social media. “I’ve been through hell and back with my foot and desperately need this pain to stop. I can barely walk and that makes diving incredibly difficult. The timing of this is devastating. My foot has not been healthy for 6 years now, but over the past few months my pain has been increasing to a level that is not sustainable to push through anymore.”

DIVING TRIALS: Broadcast Schedule

Johnson, like Boudia, switched from platform to springboard after the Rio Games. When Johnson started training in Indianapolis at age 10, Boudia, then 17, drove him to and from practice.

Johnson made the world championships team in 2017 and 2019 with a best finish of sixth and won the NCAA 3m springboard title in 2017 and 2018.

At Trials, Rio Olympic silver medalist Michael Hixon and Andrew Capobianco lead the synchro springboard heading into the finals.

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