On the evening of December 13, Alina Zagitova announced that she would make some sensational recognition on the air of Channel One. This was a complete surprise for the fans, who began to wonder what the Olympic champion could say. Assumptions were made very different - from the end of a career due to unsatisfactory results to the change of coach.
As a result, Zagitova announced that she intends to take a competitive pause at least until the end of the current season. She decided to suspend her career and miss the next Russian championship, which will be held from December 24 to 29 in Krasnoyarsk.
“I will not go anywhere, but I will not take part in the upcoming Russian championship in Krasnoyarsk. I want to clarify that I do not pretend to the championship of Europe and the world without selection. I have always been selected for all tournaments according to the sporting principle. But I plan to continue training, I will participate in various shows. I think it’s even good, I will look for myself, ”the athlete explained.
Zagitova also emphasized that with her victories she had already proved everything to her rivals and fans, since she had already won many titles, becoming the first athlete in the history of Russian figure skating, who won all the most prestigious international tournaments.
“I have everything in life now. In my opinion, there must still be something missing. I need to get the motivation back on the ice. I think that only those athletes who have gone through this can understand me. I won everything that could be, and that’s it, ”said the 17-year-old athlete.
Zagitova emphasized that she is in good relations with her coach Eteri Tutberidze and will continue to work under her leadership. The mentor herself said that the skater had been thinking about a pause for a year and a half.
“This decision was not accidental. About one and a half years she voiced this desire, it is not unexpected. Those one and a half years, which she continued to compete and fight for the title of the best athlete in the world, were difficult. It was already some kind of request, in the summer she asked for at least a break, she wanted to come to the decision that she wants to compete, ”said Tutberidze.
The coach expressed hope that Zagitova would soon want to return to the sport and independently come to such a decision.
“She rides very beautifully and in itself is very beautiful on ice. Therefore, we all coaching staff, the federation tried to convince her to continue. It seems to me that Alina can’t live without it anyway, she just needs to come to this herself. Not when she is persuaded, but that she herself comes and says that she wants to compete and win. She does not stop the training process, she comes and works, so that at any time when she decides to return, it was possible to do so. We allowed Alina to make this decision so that she would soon get bored and come back, ”Tutberidze added.
Zagitova’s sensational statement was preceded by her unsuccessful performance in the Grand Prix finals, where she took the last sixth place, while other Russians and her training group friends tried on medals. Alyona Kostornaya, Anna Shcherbakova and Alexandra Trusova took the entire podium, and Zagitova for the first time since last year’s championship in Russia did not get into the top three.
Immediately after the failure at the competition, Zagitova refused to participate in demonstrations. As the president of the Russian Figure Skating Federation Alexander Gorshkov said in an interview with RIA Novosti, the cause was a hip injury.
After the unsuccessful rental of Zagitova, many experts began to talk about the decline of the athlete's career. However, the Olympic champion in pair skating Maxim Trankov in an interview with RT expressed the opinion that it is too early for a 17-year-old skater to think about it.
- © MARCO BERTORELLO
“She is an Olympic champion and the only one in history to have all the titles in this sport. What kind of sunset career can we talk about? These are all empty words in fact. Zagitova did a lot for figure skating, and no one else can boast of what she achieved. Moreover, the current success of our girls also became possible only thanks to what Alina did. All of them are equal to her, ”he said.
The athlete is in good shape, said in an interview with RT and the first ever Russian world champion in women's single skating, Maria Butyrskaya.
“Yes, she is already a girl, and it’s hard for her to fight. She was the same girl at the Olympics, and now she has begun growing up. This will happen to everyone, everyone will have weight, and we will say the same about the others. To ask: “And where are the fours?” But this is normal, ”she said.
Against the background of talk of Zagitova’s possible departure from sports, two-time world champion Irina Slutskaya shared her opinion about the end of the skater’s career. In her Instagram, the athlete noted that from figure skating "you need to be able to leave on time and leave beautifully."
“Sport does not stand still. Sport is developing every day, and all programs are getting complicated. Being in the top for 10 years is incredibly difficult. I remember as if yesterday: I am 27, and I have already received many medals and awards, and also became a seven-time European champion (and yes, until no one broke my record). Oh, that was really cool! I think you noticed that now many athletes are leaving at age 20, and someone before. I can only tell you for myself: I had a plan - to go to the Olympics, and then boldly leave the big sport, ”she wrote.
Now, fans will be able to see Zagitova in practice only in ice productions. The Olympic champion plans to perform in Tatyana Navka's show Sleeping Beauty. The legend of two kingdoms ”, which will be shown in Moscow from late December to early January. Earlier, Zagitova announced her performance on the Art on Ice show from February 6-16 in Switzerland and April 10-11 in Taiwan.