Biathlon star Olga Zaitseva delays retirement until 2014
Zaytseva, who celebrated her 33rd birthday last week, was one of the few bright spots during Russia's disastrous Vancouver Olympics last year.
A gold medal in the 4x6 kilometer relay and a silver in the 12.5 kilometer mass start were added to her collection in Canada.
However, Russia's national team coach, Anatoly Khovantsev, was later sacked after a poor run of results at the 2011 World Championships in Khanti-Mansiysk, which likely compelled Zaytseva, the team’s leader, to announce retirement.
On Wednesday, though, Zaitseva said she felt reenergized, having taken time off following a turbulent year.
“Last season was very difficult for everyone on the team, myself included,” the Olympic champion said. “That is why I announced my retirement after considering it all last year… Now that I was able to get some rest, I reconsidered and will continue my career until 2014. One of the most important factors was my desire to mentor and support the up-and-coming and inexperienced stars, as I am the leader of the team. Besides that, I've still got plenty of individual goals in the sport and ultimately felt it was too early to leave.”