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World Figure Skating Rivals Aim for Gold

Posted March. 19, 2008 03:11,   


○ “I haven’t even been able to say hello to her yet”: Kim Yu-na

South Korea’s Kim Yu-na received the most questions at the press conference on Tuesday. After the conference, ESPN and Reuters rushed to interview her.

During a short break, she sat on the edge of a chair and said, “I want to go back to the hotel. I’m so tired.” But when reporters approached her, she stood up with a smiling face, as if she wasn’t tired at all.

When questioned about her injury, Kim replied, “I still feel the pain. I’m not in good condition, but I think I will be fine if I perform well in the remaining official practice.”

Kim did not see the training session of her rival Mao Asada of Japan. She said, “I don’t think that it would make any difference if I saw her practice. I’ll just do my best.” On her homepage, Kim wrote, “Though it`s difficult, I want to do well. But can I?” These comments raised the curiosity of many fans. In response, she said, “It’s nothing. I wrote it because I didn’t like my performance.”

Ku Dong-hoe, president of IB Sports, Kim’s management company, said, “She has been reading novels and essays in her room.”

○ “I was sorry to hear about her injury”: Asada

Asada, who arrived in Sweden late Monday, displayed clean jumps and artistry in the open practice session.

Kim’s coach Brian Orser, who watched her performance, said, “I like her jump. But music and performance didn’t match.”

Asada said, “I did triple axels and combination jumps well. I hope I can maintain this condition through the competition.”

She won the title at the Four Continents Figure Skating Championship in Korea in February.

“I was so sorry that Kim couldn’t join the competition due to her injury. She and I are special to each other because we motivate each other,” Asada said. She added that Kim and she chat whenever they meet, noting, “I don’t want to overexert myself but just want to do my best without any regrets.”