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Day 2 roundup: Plushenko inspires Russia to 1st gold, Wust regains women's 3,000m title

English.news.cn   2014-02-10 05:45:46

SOCHI, Feb. 9 (Xinhua) -- Yevgeny Plushenko inspired Russia to their first gold medal at the Sochi Olympic Games from the team figure stating here on Sunday while Irene Wust took the second speed skating gold for the Netherlands in the women's 3,000 meters.

Plushenko, 31, thrilled the crowd from the second he stepped on to the ice. Skating to Best of Plushenko, the veteran hit a quad toeloop, triple axel and double toeloop, scored 168.20 points and picked up 10 team points for Russia before a watching Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The 15-year-old star Julia Lipnitskaia then posted a personal best of 141.51 points in the women's event to seal the title ahead of American Gracie Gold and Italian Valentina Marchei.

Canada took silver and the United States the bronze.

Ten teams, each consisting of one lady, one man, one pairs and one ice dance couple, competed in the three-day event. Five teams were eliminated following the short program phase on Saturday.

"I am very happy of course with my performance and that of our team," said Plushenko. "I tried my best in both the short program and the long program. I think today I would give myself a 4 plus.

"In principle I did everything I planned to with the exception of two jumps (the triple Salchows). This means everything to me. I did the quad, I did two triple axels and two triple Lutzes.

"I'm 31 years and this means everything to me. It's so much history," added Plushenko, the 2006 Olympic champion and two-time silver medalist in 2002 and 2010.

Lipnitskaya said, "I don't know how to explain the feeling I had out there. I'm very happy to have helped win the first gold medal for Russia."

Wust beat off defending champion Martina Sablikova from the Czech Republic to reclaim the title she won in the Turin Games in 2006. She clocked four minutes and 0.34 second to win the race at the Adler Arena, 1.61 seconds faster than Sablikova.

With the triumph, the 27-year-old Wust extended her gold medal winning streak at the Turin and Vancouver Games, where she was victorious in the women's 1,500m event, and became the first Dutch athlete to win golds at three Olympic Winter Games.

Legendary German skater Claudia Pechstein, 41, came close to becoming the first speed skater to win medals at six Olympic Winter Games, but she finally finished fourth in 4:05.26, 1.79 seconds behind Olga Graf, who took home the bronze.

Matthias Mayer captured the gold in the men's downhill and became the first Austrian to win the event since Fritz Strobl at the 2002 Salt Lake City Games.

The 23-year-old finished the 3.5km race in two minutes 6.23 seconds. Italian Christof Innerhofer won silver at just six-hundredths behind and Norway's Kjetil Jansrud took bronze.

World downhill champion Aksel Lund Svindal of Norway finished fourth while U.S. veteran Bode Miller had to settle for the eighth.

In the men's skiathlon, Switzerland's Dario Cologna won his second Olympic gold in one hour, eight minutes and 15.4 seconds. Marcus Hellner of Sweden took the silver in 1:08:15.8 and Martin Johnsrud Sundby of Norway won the bronze in 1:08:16.8.

Cologna won his first gold in the 15km freestyle four year ago in Vancouver.

Jamie Anderson claimed the women's slopestyle title and completed a double for the United States. Sage Kotsenburg took the men's event on Saturday.

Two defending champions retained their titles.

Anastasiya Kuzmina of Slovakia became the first woman to win two Olympic titles in the same individual biathlon in the 7.5km sprint while Felix Loch from Germany took the men's luge.

The men's ski jumping was won by Poland's Kamil Stoch with jumps of 105.5m and 103.5m for a total of 278 points.

Slovenia's Peter Prevc took the silver with 265.3 points and Norway's Anders Bardal the bronze with 264.1.

Editor: Mu Xuequan
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