Ruined dreams & lost season: Medvedeva fails to qualify for national team
Russian long-time figure skating leader Evgenia Medvedeva has failed to pass a tough selection for the national team following an unimpressive performance at the Russian championship in Saransk.
Medvedeva’s short program was a total disaster with two jumping elements being disrupted, a visible error which brought her to just 14th place, ruining all chances of securing a coveted spot on the team.
The skater’s solid performance in free program allowed her to move seven spots up, however, her final seventh place was not enough for entering the national team. According to the rules, announced by the Russian figure skating federation, only the two top finishers were granted automatic tickets to the team with one skater being selected by the coaches board.
The competition in Saransk was sensationally won by juniors with all three steps on the podium being occupied by Eteri Tutberidze’s skaters, who are not yet the eligible age to compete at senior events.
Anna Shcherbakova claimed the title in Saransk, world junior champion Alexandra Trusova settled for silver and junior grand prix winner Alena Kostornaia completed the podium.
Reigning Olympic champion Alina Zagitova, who had taken the lead after the short program, unexpectedly squandered a five-point gap sliding to just fifth place in the final protocol. With the three medalists being ineligible to compete at senior starts, places on the team were granted to Zagitova and Stanislava Konstantinova who finished fifth and fourth respectively.
The third skater to represent Russia at the European championship will be Sofia Samodurova who qualified for the Grand Prix final this year.
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva, who re-emerged in figure skating elite this season after restoring her powerful triple axel, was not selected for the national squad, as the skater missed the championship due to pneumonia.
The European Figure Skating Championships will take place in Minsk, Belarus, from January 21 to 27.