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What happened at the World Championships in France without Russian skaters

The International Union of Skaters, following the general hysteria, banned figure skaters from Russia to participate in the post-Olympic 2022 World Championships in Montpellier. However, by making such a decision, ISU actually shot itself in the foot. Figure skaters in our country, especially figure skaters, have been pushing this sport forward for many years. By removing our participants from the number of participants, the International Skaters Union won the most boring world championship in figure skating in recent years. KP-Sport tells what happened at the 2022 World Figure Skating Championships in France without Russian figure skaters.

The women’s tournament at the 2022 World Cup has become weaker

In general, the final top 3 in women’s singles at the World Championships was composed, in fact, of those who could somehow fight with the Russians. Kaori Sakamoto “took” the bronze medal of the Olympics from Valieva, Luna Hendrix ruined our nerves in the stages of the Grand Prix, and Alice Lew all season struggled to stop being just “promising” and show some result. The American in the junior tournaments fought on equal terms with Valieva, but if Camila in the first adult season in each of the tournaments broke world records, Lew was third in the world championship, where there were no strongest rivals. The harsh prose of life.

Japan’s Kaori Sakamoto won the 2022 World Figure Skating World Championships without the Russians. Photo: Reuters

Sakamoto’s victory at the World Cup was Japan’s first since 2014. Then Mao Assad won. But in 2018 was the last victory of the non-Russian figure skater. Then the first was Caitlin Osmond from Canada. But between these starts – a complete victory of Russian athletes. 2015 – the best was Tuktamysheva, 2016-2017 – Eugene Medvedev, 2019 – Alina Zagitova, 2020 – the tournament was not held, 2021 – Anna Shcherbakova won. So, by removing the Russians, ISU actually allowed those who were second before to win. At the post-Olympic world championships, by the way, many stars of the Russian national team had “eclipses”. Yulia Lipnitskaya was only second in Saitam-2014, Alina Zagitova was fifth in Milan-2018.

So even Kaori Sakamoto herself says right after winning the short program:

– Since there are no Russian figure skaters here, I was suddenly considered a contender for the gold medal.

Anti-records in pair skating

Western journalists can rejoice in the non-arrival of Russians, but here’s another fact. Alex Knirim and Brandon Fraser, who won the doubles, won the tournament with a score of 221.09. Riku Miura and Ryuichi Kihara of Japan finished second with 199.55, and Vanessa James and Eric Redford won bronze (197.32).

This is the worst result of the winners since the introduction of the new referee counting system. At the last World Cup, the Americans would be third, and the winners would not even be in the top 5. However, for the United States, this is the first gold medal in pairs since 1979.

Trusova Tarasova Morozov
Trusova watched the final in pair skating from the stands in Beijing. Photo: Instagram by Alexandra Trusova

For comparison – Evgenia Tarasova and Vladimir Morozov at the Olympics finished the rental with a score of 239.25 points, Anastasia Mishina and Alexander Gallyamov – 237.71. Chinese Sui Wenjing / Han Tsung, who won the world record, but did not come to the 2022 World Cup – 239.88 points.

The journalist who poisoned Valieva did not hide her joy

“Media scandals” are one of the distinguishing features of this world championship. Everyone knows that the masters of thrash talk are UFC fighters and in particular the Irishman Conor McGregor. But in figure skating, the verbal battle reaches a new level.

Remember the journalist Christine Brennan who poisoned Camilla Valieva during the Olympics? She spoke with a smile on her face about Valieva’s dubious doping story, inflating this scandal. After the performance of figure skaters-greenhouses, she wrote on personal social networks:

– No Russia? No China? No problem. Americans Alex Knirim and Brandon Fraser brought the United States its first gold medal at the 1979 World Championships in doubles.

Canadian Beverly Smith did not miss the opportunity to also “insert a hairpin” about the results of the World Cup:

– There was a women’s tournament of a healthy person at the World Figure Skating Championships. I enjoyed it until the last minute. Happy faces on the podium. Kaori Sakamoto listens to the anthem of his country in tears. That’s how it should be.

Kamila Valieva
Valieva with coaches after the rental. Photo: REUTERS

She openly rejoiced at the absence of Russians at the World Cup:

– We have not seen triple axels, but what a healthy and sensible women’s skating! Compared to the drama that was at the Olympics. They sighed with relief: there are no Russian athletes and judges at the World Cup. I love that.

However, in this pursuit of the “red word”, all, absolutely all, miss one objective fact. The same women’s tournament became an order of magnitude weaker without Russian skaters. Yes, Western journalists can rejoice as much as they want that the Russians did not come. In the short program, no skater even tried to perform a triple axel. Quads in arbitrary? Forget it! Alice Lew jumped a trixel, Wakaba Higuchi fell off it, Yu Yong from South Korea made this element ultra-si with a twist. There were no women’s quadruplets in this tournament. And this is a big step back for all women’s figure skating. Because in Russia, even our juniors are happy with these elements.

The progress of Maurice Kvitelashvili and the regression of “former Russian women”

Objectively, only in two types of program the composition of participants was more or less acceptable. And there the Russians could not be “stronger on the head” – it’s men’s singles and a tournament in ice dancing. Frenchmen Gabriela Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron, who did not want to come to the 2022 European Championships, still arrived after the success at the 2022 Olympics. And won the fifth victory with a world record of 229.82 points. Nathan Chen from the USA was not in men’s skating, and the great Yuzuru Hanyu was resting. So without them, the Japanese staged the show. Shoma Uno won (312.48), and Yuma Kagiyama came in second with 297.60.

Maurice Kvitelashvili, figure skating
Maurice Kvitelashvili in the image of a blue gin. Photo: Global Look press

“Our” Maurice Kvitelashvili did not have five points before the bronze. The Georgian from “Crystal”, who was brought to the ice by Pavel Slyusarenko, who works with the coaches of the Tutberidze team, became the fourth – 272.03 points. For him, this is a huge leap forward after 14th place in last year’s tournament. By the way, at the world championship in the women’s part of the competition for other countries were Russian women who changed their citizenship. Did they stand out in some way? Georgian Anastasia Gubanova – sixth (196.61), Ekaterina Ryabova from Azerbaijan – ninth (188.50), Polish Ekaterina Kurakova – thirteenth (186.43). For them, the World Cup, you just have to say objectively – just a chance to attend a tournament of this level.

Maurice’s fourth place, we can say, is also a symbolic “hello” to those who rejoiced at the absence of Russians at the World Cup. As a result, in two of the four types of programs, the World Cup lost its top participants. The results of the 2022 tournament objectively “sagged” after it was decided not to let the Russians into the 2022 World Cup in France.

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