Sports

Russia’s Sofia Samodurova Wins The European Ladies' Figure Skating Title

HARSH RANJAN | 0
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| January 26 , 2019 , 14:52 IST

Russia’s Sofia Samodurova outclassed Olympic champion Alina Zagitova with a stunning performance to claim the European ladies' figure skating title in Minsk, Belarus.

Speaking to media, Sofia said “I am overwhelmed by emotions now, I can’t find words to describe what I am feeling now. I am European Champion and that’s so awesome! My coach told me to stop crying, but I can’t."

“These are just my sincere emotions. Probably I am more happy about the fact that my coach is pleased with me,” she added.

Dancing to a musical backdrop of ‘Burlesque, Samodurova put on a show for the judges with a score of 140.96 for her free program.

That added to her personal best mark of 72.88 from earlier in the event to put her top of the leaderboard on a season’s best 213.84 points. 

For Samodurova, the victory came at her debut European Championship and announces the arrival of yet another budding star in Russia’s seemingly bottomless pool of female skating talent. 

Trailing in second behind her compatriot after the short program, Samodurova, 16, produced a superb free program routine to push reigning champion Zagitova into second. 

She had clear daylight ahead of fellow 16-year-old Zagitova, the defending champion, who only managed 123.34 points from a disappointing free routine in which she finished fourth.

That left her second overall on 198.34 points in total when added to her 75 points from the short program. 

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Zagitova said after the competition, "I don’t know exactly what has happened today, but I do hope that the best is yet to come for me.''

''Second place is still good because it could have been worse,'' she added.

Finland’s Viveca Lindfors clinched third with 194.40 points, while Russia's Stanislava Konstantinova came in fourth with 189.72 points.