Close Call for Zagitova as Russia Scores First Gold of Games

The Russian figure skaters went one-two on the podium in the Ladies’ Singles as Alina Zagitova and Evgenia Medvedeva won gold and silver respectively. It was Russia’s first gold this Games, in which the national team was banned from competing under its flag due to the nation’s widespread doping programme. This was also the first instance in which medal ceremony attendees heard the Olympic anthem, which would be played in lieu of the Russian anthem under the conditions of the same ban.

In the actual event, rivalry brewed between the two Russian skaters. While Zagitova had given herself a comfortable lead after finishing the short programme with a world record score, she faltered in one of her jumps in the free skate, putting her gold medal up for grabs. Medvedeva skated brilliantly in her free programme, tying Zagitova’s score but not enough to bring her to the top position. Just like what happened at the Ice Dance a couple of days ago, Zagitova escaped with the gold, leading the overall standings by less than a point.

Canada’s Kaetlyn Osmond finished her free programme with another solid routine that was good enough for bronze. Gabrielle Daleman, the other Canadian skater in the programme, finished 15th overall after suffering four deductions in her free programme.

Above Photo: Alina Zagitova jumps on the podium during the medal ceremony. (Getty Images)

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