Tennis great Billie Jean King has dropped out of the U.S. delegation to the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, which begins Friday.

The White House announced the revisions to the delegation Wednesday afternoon. King told the Associated Press that her mother's failing health has forced her to remain in the United States.

"It is important for me to be with my mother and my brother at this difficult time," King said, according to the news service.

King was to be one of three openly gay athletes leading the U.S. delegation to Russia at a time when the Obama administration had criticized that nation's anti-gay laws approved last year. The president, first lady Michelle Obama and Vice President Biden will not attend the Games as the White House sought to highlight its dissatisfaction with President Vladimir Putin's administration.