Russian lawmakers will consider banning its athletes from competing in more than two Olympics, at least in part to avoid a repeat of figure skater Yevgeny Plushenko‘s controversy at Sochi 2014, according to Russian media and The Associated Press.
In Sochi, Plushenko, then 31, helped Russia to gold in the first Olympic team event and later withdrew from the individual competition after his warm-up before the short program.
He cited a back injury and underwent surgery after the Olympics, but Plushenko also said in December 2013 that he wanted to compete in the team event and not the individual event.
If the Russian proposal was a law in 2014, Plushenko would have been ineligible for Sochi (as a Russian, at least), and a younger, less injury-prone athlete could have taken the lone Russian men’s figure spot and competed in both the team event and individually at the Winter Games.
If the proposal blocks future athletes from competing in more than two Olympics, Russia could be without two-time Olympic pole vault champion Yelena Isinbayeva at Rio 2016, plus hockey star Alex Ovechkin at Pyeongchang 2018.
Plushenko has said he could try to make a fifth Olympic team in 2018 as well. He spoke out against the proposed law in comments to Russian news agency TASS.
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Two-time Olympic pole vault champion Yelena Isinbayeva does not plan on competing in 2015, according to comments on her Instagram page.
“I am now fully busy with my daughter and family and doing only light exercises,” was posted on her page in Russian, according to a Reuters translation. “I will start full training no earlier than June 2015.
“The main goal for me is the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro in 2016.”
Isinbayeva, 32, gave birth to a girl in June after winning the 2013 World Championship over London Olympic champion Jenn Suhr. Her coach told a Russian news agency last week that she would return to training over the next month.
Comments on her Instagram page indicated Isinbayeva is doing light training for the time being.
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Two-time Olympic pole vault champion Yelena Isinbayeva is serious about the Rio Olympics after giving birth to a daughter and will return to training over the next month, her coach told Russian agency ITAR-TASS.
Isinbayeva, 32, has competed in every Olympic pole vault competition. Women’s pole vault debuted at the Sydney 2000 Olympics. She owns the 10 highest jumps of all time.
American Jenn Suhr beat Isinbayeva at the London Olympics, but Isinbayeva returned the favor at the 2013 Moscow World Championships.
Isinbayeva took a break following last season. She gave birth to a girl in June.
The best women’s pole vaulter this season was Brazilian Fabiana Murer, creating heavy competition going into the Rio Olympics.
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