2月14日未明に行われたソチオリンピックのフィギュアスケート男子ショートプログラムで、過去3大会でメダルを獲得している、ロシアのエフゲニー・プルシェンコ選手が腰の負傷で棄権。会見で「引退する」と語った。

そのショートプログラムで史上初の100点超えを記録した日本の羽生結弦選手が、プルシェンコ選手を尊敬していることを、競技前のインタビューで伝えられると、「私は彼のヒーローだったかもしれないが、今は彼が私のヒーローだ」と答え、若いライバルに賛辞を送った。

プルシェンコ選手は6日に行われた団体戦でも滑り、ロシアの金メダル獲得に貢献。しかし、個人戦が始まる前日の練習中に腰を負傷。悪化させ、棄権することになった。

棄権したプルシェンコ選手は「きのうの練習でジャンプを降りたときに腰を痛め、きょうの試合前の練習で3回転ジャンプをしたら腰の痛みが悪化し、無理だと思った。オリンピックよりも体を選んだ」と棄権した理由を説明しました。

(NHKニュース「プルシェンコは腰痛め棄権 引退へ」より 2014/02/14 02:53)

プルシェンコ選手は2002年のソルトレイクシティーオリンピックで銀メダル、2006年のトリノで金、前回のバンクーバーでは銀を獲得し、十年以上にわたって世界の一線で活躍した。

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    SOCHI, RUSSIA - FEBRUARY 13: Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan competes during the Men's Figure Skating Short Program on day 6 of the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics at the at Iceberg Skating Palace on February 13, 2014 in Sochi, Russia. (Photo by Paul Gilham/Getty Images)

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棄権後のインタビューで、プルシェンコ選手はファンに謝罪。今後はアイスショーに出たり、ビジネスをしたいと話しているという。

「ファンに謝りたい。そして、私のことを信じてくれた全ての人に謝りたい。練習中にトリプルアクセルを跳んだときに失敗し、全てのことが起こった。失敗した後、自分に言い聞かせたんだ。ショートとフリーの演技がまだ2日あるぞ、と」

「団体戦と個人戦、4つの競技に出るためにオリンピックにやってきた。団体戦の競技しか出ないという噂があったけど、それはまったく正しくない。団体戦の後、引退することは考えなかったんだ。身体の調子は良かった。今日起こったことは、突然だったんだ」

(MSN産経ニュース「【フィギュア】プルシェンコ「私を信じてくれた全ての人に謝りたい」 棄権後にコメント」より 2014/02/14 03:13)

【※加筆】プルシェンコ選手へのインタビューが行われた時間について「競技前に」を追記しました。(2014/02/16 12:50)

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