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8 Feb, 2021 14:23

‘Team Russia should take on the world’: Evgenia Medvedeva sees international Channel One Cup future after battling Alina Zagitova

‘Team Russia should take on the world’: Evgenia Medvedeva sees international Channel One Cup future after battling Alina Zagitova

Russian figure skating queen Evgenia Medvedeva, who was in tears as her team lost to Alina Zagitova’s squad at the inaugural Channel One Cup, has called for the gripping contest to be to turned into an international competition.

The newly-created exhibition, aimed at giving competitive practice to skaters amid the Covid-19 pandemic, was well received by fans and pundits after lunaching in Moscow over the weekend.

Led by Zagitova and Medvedeva, Russia’s top skaters were separated into two camps, delivering short and free programs in four events over the course of the two-day event.

Medvedeva’s squad led before the final event, but Zagitova’s teammates stole victory after two of the country’s strongest female competitors, Kamila Valieva and Anna Shcherbakova, posted flawless quad-jumping performances, mesmerizing judges who awarded them the highest scores.

Elizaveta Tuktamysheva and Alexandra Trusova, who represented Medvedeva’s team, made noticeable errors, squandering the lead the team held after three events.

The ‘Red Machine’, captained by Zagitova, scored 2634,95 points, leapfrogging Medvedeva and company, who had 2606,21 points.

I can’t say whether I liked the tournament or not,” Medvedeva reflected after the post-event press conference.

But I’m sure that the competition will be formatted and new rules will be introduced.

"The fact that I cried in public two times during the event speaks for itself. The last time that happened was at the 2018 Olympics. I think this really shows what kind of emotions the tournament brought to us.”

The two-time world champion said that the presence of international competition could add intrigue to the event.

“It would be great if Team Russia competed against the world," she suggested. "For us – Russian athletes and fans – it would be more exciting to support the national team competing against some other squad.

"Yes, now it’s impossible to hold an international contest, but I hope it will be conducted in future – our team against the rest of the world."

Also on rt.com Channel One Cup: Women’s figure-skating team lands historic victory in fierce contest with male rivals at Moscow festival (VIDEO)