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Shipulin wins Russia’s first medal at biathlon worlds

Shipulin wins Russia’s first medal at biathlon worlds
Anton Shipulin has ended Russia’s medal drought at the biathlon Worlds, while the pursuit show was stolen again by Norwegian Emil Hegle Svendsen, who is so far unstoppable in the Czech town of Nove Mesto.

The Norwegian covered the 12.5km pursuit race in 32 minutes and 35.5 seconds, edging overall World Cup leader Martin Fourcade of France by one tenth of a second in a breath-taking finish.

Svendsen had won Saturday's sprint, also beating Fourcade into second place, and helped the mixed relay team to its third-straight victory on Thursday.

Meanwhile Shipulin climbed from seventh place at the start to third at the finish for the second year in a row, bringing Russia its first medal at the championships.

Despite perfect shooting, Dmitry Malyshko had to settle for fourth place, finishing 5.4 seconds behind Svendsen.

On Saturday, the Russian Biathlon Union president, billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov, vowed to step down from his position if the team fails to win at least two gold medals at the Sochi Olympics next year.

"A result that wouldn't do for me is fewer than two gold medals," he said on the sidelines of the World Biathlon Championships in the Czech Republic.

"If there is fewer than that, then I will resign. It means I'll have failed."

With almost half of the last major rehearsal until the Sochi Games over, the Russians are far behind schedule.