Yuzuru Hanyu

Yuzuru Hanyu
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Yuzuru Hanyu to miss Japan Figure Skating Championships

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Yuzuru Hanyu, the reigning Olympic and world figure skating champion, will miss his national championships this week after suffering ankle and knee injuries this fall, according to Japanese media citing the Japan Skating Federation.

Hanyu can (and very likely will) be named to Japan’s three-man Olympic team despite missing nationals.

Hanyu has reportedly been off the ice for more than one month since a Nov. 9 practice fall.

“It is an important selection competition, and the Olympics are a big goal, so with that in mind we would like to think things through together,” Japan Skating Federation director Yoshiko Kobayashi said last week, according to Kyodo News.

Hanyu, who turned 23 on Dec. 7, fell on a quadruple Lutz attempted and then favored his right ankle in a Nov. 9 practice at a Grand Prix event (video here).

He skated the run-through for his free skate, although he elected not to do any more jumps.

“I have been told by the doctor that I need 10 days of complete rest,” Hanyu said in a statement on Nov. 12, according to Kyodo. “Following that, it will take three to four weeks to return and get back to where I was.”

Hanyu and world silver medalist Shoma Uno are favored to lead Japan’s Olympic men’s figure skating team. The third spot is likely to go to Takahito Mura or Keiji Tanaka.

Hanyu competed twice this season.

He posted a world-record short program score in his debut at a small September event in Canada, but struggled to fifth place in the free skate and finished second overall behind two-time world champion Javier Fernandez of Spain.

He then finished second to U.S. champion Nathan Chen at the first Grand Prix event of the season in Moscow in October.

Chen is the only undefeated male singles skater this season.

Hanyu won four straight national titles before missing last season’s event with the flu.

He was still named to Japan’s team for worlds, where he won his second title in four years.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Yuzuru Hanyu uncertain for Japanese Nationals

Yuzuru Hanyu
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Yuzuru Hanyu, the reigning Olympic and world figure skating champion, has been off the ice for more than one month with right ankle and knee injuries suffered in a practice fall, according to Japanese media citing the Japan Skating Federation.

The Japanese Championships are next week. Hanyu can (and very likely will) be named to the three-man Olympic team even if he misses nationals.

“It is an important selection competition, and the Olympics are a big goal, so with that in mind we would like to think things through together,” Japan Skating Federation director Yoshiko Kobayashi said Sunday, according to Kyodo News.

Hanyu, who turned 23 last Thursday, fell while attempting a quadruple Lutz and favored his right ankle in a Nov. 9 practice at a Grand Prix event (video here).

He skated during the run-through for his free skate, although he elected not to do any more jumps.

“I have been told by the doctor that I need 10 days of complete rest,” Hanyu said in a statement on Nov. 12, according to Kyodo. “Following that, it will take three to four weeks to return and get back to where I was.”

Hanyu and world silver medalist Shoma Uno are favored to lead Japan’s Olympic men’s figure skating team. The third spot is likely to go to Takahito Mura or Keiji Tanaka.

Hanyu competed twice this season.

He posted a world-record short program score in his debut at a small September event in Canada, but struggled to fifth place in the free skate and finished second overall behind two-time world champion Javier Fernandez of Spain.

He then finished second to U.S. champion Nathan Chen at the first Grand Prix event of the season in Moscow in October. Chen is the only undefeated skater this season.

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Yuzuru Hanyu withdraws from Grand Prix event

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OSAKA, Japan (AP) — Yuzuru Hanyu pulled out of the NHK Trophy after injuring his ankle in practice, a setback that could have a serious impact on his preparations for an Olympic title defense.

The 22-year-old Hanyu withdrew before Friday’s short program, a day after falling while attempting a quadruple lutz in practice, and three months before the PyeongChang Olympics.

“As I was preparing for the NHK, I received an examination from doctors last night. Unfortunately their judgment was that I withdraw,” Hanyu said in a statement. “I will now go through treatment as I prepare for the Japanese Nationals.”

Nationals are Dec. 19-24 after the Grand Prix Final in Nagoya, Japan.

Hanyu appeared to be favoring his right ankle after the fall but did not leave Thursday’s practice. He skated during the run-through for his free skate, although he did not do any further jumps.

A two-time world champion, Hanyu last month placed second at the Rostelecom Cup in Russia, where he skated well but wasn’t his dominant self.

Hanyu joined other notable absentees from NHK.

Olympic silver medalist Patrick Chan withdrew to focus on the Canadian national championships and the Olympics. Japan’s Daisuke Murakami pulled out because of pneumonia.

The top remaining men in the field are past U.S. champions Jason Brown and Adam Rippon.

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