- Sputnik International, 1920, 01.02.2022
2022 Winter Olympic Games in Beijing
The XXIV Olympic Winter Games, which are scheduled from 4-20 February, are kicking off in the Chinese capital. Almost 3,000 athletes from over 90 countries are participating in the games, competing in 15 various disciplines.

Russian Teen Figure Skater Kamila Valieva Comes 4th in Women's Single After Unprecedented Pressure

© Sputnik / Alexander Wilf / Go to the mediabankKamila Valieva
Kamila Valieva - Sputnik International, 1920, 17.02.2022
The 15-year-old became the target of media harassment after her doping test taken on 25 December came back "positive" only in February, days after her triumphant performance at the Beijing Olympics.
Russian figure skating sensation Kamila Valieva came fourth in the women's single event at the Beijing Games on Thursday, finishing with a total score of 224.09. The teenager, who has been under immense pressure from the media and sports agencies over claims that her December doping probe came back positive, landed the opening quad, but faltered after her triple Axel, slipping and falling multiple times.
Despite several mistakes, Valieva kept her composure throughout the performance. At the end of her programme, the teenager burst into tears, skating head down towards the exit. She was met with loud chants from her supporters, shouting "Bravo, bravo!" in Russian.
© Sputnik / Grigory Sysoev / Go to the mediabankKamila Valieva
Kamila Valieva - Sputnik International, 1920, 17.02.2022
Kamila Valieva
Earlier this week, she came first after completing her short programme and gaining 82.16 points. Valieva successfully finished her performance, even though she barely held on to her opening triple Axel, and broke down in tears as she was leaving the rink.
The 15-year-old figure skater received an all-clear from the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) to keep competing in the Beijing Olympics earlier this week. The decision was made due to Valieva being a minor and therefore a "protected person" under the World Anti-Doping Code.

"The Ad Hoc Division of the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has issued its decision in the arbitration procedures relating to the Russian figure skater Kamila Valieva (the Athlete): the applications filed by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), and the International Skating Union (ISU) have been dismissed", CAS said in a statement.

At the same time, the IOC said that if Valieva were to finish in the top three, there would be no medal ceremony during the games. The committee also said it would be "inappropriate" to hold a medal ceremony for the team event won by the teenager and the Russian team over a week ago.
The IOC, WADA, and the ISU had appealed RUSADA's decision to lift a provisional doping suspension of Valieva, after a trace of trimetazidine – a medication prohibited at the Olympics – was found in her probe on 25 December. Valieva's tests taken before the Olympics and after the Games had already started were clean.
Kamila Valieva, of the Russian Olympic Committee, competes in the women's short program team figure skating competition at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Sunday, Feb. 6, 2022, in Beijing. - Sputnik International, 1920, 11.02.2022
'Why Now?' Sports Lawyer Questions Timing of Kamila Valieva's Doping Test Results
The results of the 25 December doping test came back with a huge 45-day time window between the dates the sample was taken and published. They were released only after Valieva had already earned a gold medal for the ROC team. The Stockholm Anti-Doping Laboratory accredited by the World Anti-Doping Agency claimed that the reason for the delays in the analysis and reporting by the lab was an increase in COVID-19 cases among staff and quarantine rules.
During her first performance as part of the Russian national team at the Beijing Olympics, the 15-year-old Valieva scored 90.18 points, breaking the Olympic record. In the free programme, she performed a quadruple salchow, as well as a quadruple toe-loop with a combination with triple toe-loop, gaining 178.92 points and becoming the first female figure skater in history to land a quad jump at the Olympic Games.
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