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Russian Lipnitskaya steals spotlight in women's short program of figure skating at Sochi

English.news.cn   2014-02-09 07:42:45

SOCHI, Feb. 8 (Xinhua) -- Russian rising star Yulia Lipnitskaya took the lead in the women's short program of figure skating team event as she scored her seasonal best result here on Saturday.

The 15-year-old dominated the rink as she beat Olympic silver medalist Mao Asada of Japan with an outstanding score of 72.90 points. Skating to the music You Don't Give Up on Love, the confident European champion in 2014 showed her talent and passion in an almost perfect performance.

"I did what I wanted to do on the ice today. Of course there was a bit of worry but, thank God, I coped well with everything I had to do. I knew I had to be calm, I had to do it all for the team," Lipnitskaya said.

Mao, 23, fell onto the ice when she missed the triple axel with a result of 64.07 points, 6.77 points short of Carolina Kostner of Italy, the bronze medalist in the European championships in January.

"My score reflected the jump I messed up. It didn't go the way it had been in training. I couldn't land one in the six minutes of warm-up, and that carried over into the competition," said Mao.

"I couldn't skate the way I'm capable of skating. I told my teammates, 'I'm so sorry' (for the fall). But I am glad we went through. I was unbelievably nervous. I felt more pressure than I expected. It just wasn't my performance. I've got to settle my nerves."

Lipnitskaya, the youngest figure skater to compete in Sochi, thanked the audience who cheered throughout her program. "I've never seen anything like the atmosphere out there today," she said. "There wasn't any silence for a single second. That kind of support made me so happy.

"My coach told me to try to listen to the music all the way through, and after the jumps it was so loud, but thank God I could hear a bit. And I could hear all the shouts of 'Julia' and 'Russia' and they really helped me."

China's national champion Zhang Kexin scored 54.58 points in her Olympic debut, ranked sixth in the 10-skater competition.

"I was nervous but I did my best. I am happy with the result," said Zhang.

Editor: Yamei Wang
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