Adelina Sotnikova retires from figure skating competition

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Adelina Sotnikova, the Sochi Olympic figure skating champion who last competed in 2015, confirmed that she retired from competition, according to Russian media.

“Officially, I want to say one thing — I’m done with professional sport, that’s for sure, because at the moment I want to be healthy, happy,” Sotnikova said on Russian TV, according to a TASS translation. “It’s sad and hard for me to say this. I will continue to make my fans happy, but not on the professional level. I do miss it insanely, when I watch competitions, my heart breaks because I want to, but, unfortunately, my health doesn’t allow me to.”

Sotnikova, then 17, became Russia’s first Olympic women’s singles champion in 2014, upsetting defending champion Yuna Kim of South Korea. The result was close and controversial, with Sotnikova overtaking Kim in the free skate to prevail by 5.48 points.

Korea Skating Union complaints about the judging were dismissed by the International Skating Union, which found no bias from Russian judge Alla Shekhovtseva, who had married a top Russian figure skating federation official and was seen hugging Sotnikova shortly after she won gold.

Sotnikova became the first female singles skater to take Olympic gold without any prior individual Olympic or world championships medals. In 2018, countrywoman Alina Zagitova matched the feat.

After Sochi, Sotnikova skated just once on the international Grand Prix circuit. Her last competitive skate was a sixth-place finish at the December 2015 Russian Championships.

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