Evgeni Plushenko did not take the gold at the Russian Figure Skating Championships for the first time in 15 years. Coming in second behind Maksim Kovtun, The Olympic champion won the short program but he could not lead in the free skating.

In the 2014 Olympic Games, team competitions will be performed for the first time. Ten teams consisting of two individuals (male and female), one sports pair and one dance pair will participate in the new Olympic tournament.

Kovtun has secured his participation on the national team in the Olympic Games in Sochi. He will take part in individual competitions. However he is not in hurry to rejoice: he says that this season he couldn’t do the quadruple-toe-loop five times, R-Sport reorted.

In turn, Plushenko will only take part in the team tournament during the Sochi Olympics. “Now I can see clearly and understand everything very well. It will be enough for me just participating in team competitions,” Plushenko told R-Sport.

Nevertheless his trainer Alexey Mishin during an interview with Rossiya 2 announced said that it is early to come up with the conclusion about who is going to participate in the Olympics from individual figure skaters.

“This will be resolved by the Ministry of Sports and the Federation of Figure Skating in Russia. Who, when and how he is going to take a part will be decided later during the European Championship in January,” he said.

Although Plushenko coming in second at the Russian championships can be seen as unfortunate, just a year earlier there was a question of bringing him back to the ice at all.

Last February he had a spine operation and according to Dr. Ilya Pekarsky, his condition was bad even for a life without sports.

First published in Russian in Gazeta.ru.