He Kexin of China poses after winning one of two gold medals in the women’s uneven bars at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.
So, if a gymnast looks like she couldn’t possibly be 16, there’s a good chance she isn’t yet.
Though He Kexin’s passport officially says that she was 16 at the time of the 2008 Olympic Games, Chinese media reported that she and other teammates may have actually been as young as fourteen at the time.
However, questions were later raised about her potentially being too young to compete.
And this isn’t the first time that allegations of underaged gymnasts have plagued the Chinese team. Ten years after the 2000 Games, the International Olympic Committee stripped that Chinese Team of its bronze medal, after uncovering evidence that star gymnast Dong Fangxiao was only 14 when she competed.
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