Alexei Yagudin: “It’s ok to rejoice at the mistakes of your competitors.”
The 2002 Olympic champion in men’s singles Alexei Yagudin reacted to the victory of the Russian team in the team event at the Beijing Games.
source: sport24.ru dd. 7th February 2022 by Konstantin Lesik
What word would you use to describe the feeling of the victory of our skaters?
Alexei Yagudin: Euphoria. I had my first one yesterday after the women’s short program, although I was still holding back. Yesterday I was in euphoria, because I understood that it was impossible to catch up our team. Thanks to the American Karen Chen, who, unfortunately, performed unsuccessfully, she became fifth in the short. It was already obvious to me that the gold was ours.
Everyone asked me yesterday about the chances for the victory of our team. I say, “Only if an earthquake happens.” I forgot to say something else – if the test is positive. And now they told me that the American Vincent Zhou was tested positive. So anything is possible, unfortunately. As you understand, there are a lot of contacts. Even if he wasn’t in the team box, during the scoring, he was with the whole team in “kiss and cry”, then in the men’s locker room. It will be a shame if we lose him for the individual competitions. But this is a question for the organizers.
Many fans rejoiced when Chen fell. Were you happy too?
Alexei Yagudin: No.
Is it ok to rejoice at the mistakes of your competitors?
Alexei Yagudin: Certainly. We are all people, in 2002 I jumped in wild, in a good sense of the word, when Zhenya fell at the Olympics. What is bad about this? My sports career was decided there!
It’s clear that I am a third person here, not a coach or a choreographer, not a leader, not an athlete. I’m only commenting. And I want everyone to succeed! What else I wanted for us is to win in a more dramatic way, so it was more touching, or something. The event could have turned out differently, but initially I was 99% sure that gold will be our. We have a very balanced team, unlike others. Someone loose in men, someone in ice dance, someone in women. I wanted to have more intrigue, but, of course, with a positive outcome.
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