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Russia’s Figure Skating Olympic Champ Zagitova to join training camp outside Moscow

A group of figure skaters under the management of world’s famous coach Eteri Tutberidze is currently training at the Novogorsk camp

MOSCOW, June 1. /TASS/. Russia’s 2018 Olympic champion in figure skating Alina Zagitova is set to join the training camp of national figure skaters in the Moscow Region's town of Novogorsk on June 2, a source close to the situation told TASS on Monday.

A group of figure skaters under the management of world’s famous coach Eteri Tutberidze is currently training at the Novogorsk camp. Alexander Kogan, the director general of the Russian Figure Skating Federation (RFSF), told TASS earlier in the day that Tutberidze returned to Russia from the United States and had to undergo the required two-week COVID-19 quarantine.

According to the source, Zagitova, who is a member of Tutberidze’s figure skating group, returned to Moscow last week from the Russian city of Kazan, and was bound to join this week the rest of athletes at the training camp outside Moscow.

"Last week, Alina [Zagitova] returned to Moscow," the source told TASS. "Tomorrow she is bound to set off for the training base in Novogorsk."

In early December 2019, the Russian figure skater announced her decision to take a break in her career for an indefinite period. Back then RFSF President Alexander Gorshkov commented on the news that a place in the Russian national team of figure skaters remained reserved for Zagitova.

During the 2019/2020 season Zagitova earned 2,620 points having won the gold of the 2019 ISU World Championship in Japan’s Saitama, the silver of the European Championship and the silver of the ISU Grand Prix to finish in the top spot of the ISU (International Skating Union) list of the world’s best female figure skaters of the 2019/2020 season packing the total number of 4,702 points.

Zagitova is currently ranked 8th (2,666 points) in the ISU list of the world’s best female figure skaters, which is topped by Japan’s Rika Kihira (4,171 points).

In addition to the gold of the 2019 ISU World Championship, Zagitova was the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics gold medalist in singles and the silver medalist in the team event.

Zagitova was the first Russian female figure skater to win all awards in ladies singles competitions as she was also the winner of the 2018 European Championships in Moscow and the gold medalist of the 2017-2018 Grand Prix Final in Nagoya.

Reopening of training camps in Russia

On May 22, Russian President Vladimir Putin approved a proposal from the Sports Ministry to reopen training camps for national teams’ athletes provided that all disciplinary and sanitary measures in view of the COVID-19 pandemic are strictly observed.

During an on-line session with Putin regarding the sanitary and epidemiological situation in the country, Russian Sports Minister Oleg Matytsin presented a step-by-step report on the restoration of the system of national training camps. Putin said in response that "when the national teams are at their training camps they are really in a self-isolation regime and, in fact, the most important is to abide by sanitary measures."

In late December 2019, Chinese officials notified the World Health Organization (WHO) about the outbreak of a previously unknown pneumonia in the city of Wuhan, in central China. Since then, cases of the novel coronavirus — named COVID-19 by the WHO — have been reported in every corner of the globe, including Russia.

On March 11, 2020, the WHO declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic. According to the latest statistics, over 6,281,000 people have been infected worldwide and more than 374,000 deaths have been reported. In addition, so far, over 2,853,600 individuals have recovered from the illness across the globe.

To date, a total of 414,878 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Russia, with 175,877 patients having recovered from the disease. Russia’s latest data indicates 4,855 fatalities nationwide. Earlier, the Russian government set up an Internet hotline to keep the public updated on the coronavirus situation.