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Ledecky pulls out of world championships 200m heats

media USA's Katie Ledecky before her heat in the 1500m freestyle AFP

Olympic champion Katie Ledecky has pulled out of the women's 200 metres freestyle at world championships on "medical grounds," Team USA said Tuesday.

The 22-year-old, who has won 14 world titles, lost her 400m crown to Australian teenager Ariarne Titmus at the weekend in a stunning upset on day one of the pool competition in Gwangju.

Ledecky will not contest Tuesday morning's 200m free heats, while a decision on her participation in the evening's 1,500m final -- an event she has dominated at the past three world championships -- has yet to be made, according to Team USA officials.

"A decision has been made by Team USA in consultation with Katie, her coach and the team's medical staff for her to withdraw from the 200-metre freestyle event on medical grounds," National Team Managing Director Lindsay Mintenko said in a statement.

"The team will determine her participation in this evening's 1500m final later in the day."

Mintenko added: "Katie has not been feeling well since arriving to Gwangju on July 17 and these precautionary measures are being taken to ensure her wellbeing and proper recovery, and to allow her to focus her energy on an abbreviated schedule."

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