Today at the Winter Olympics: Fears raised over Kamila Valieva’s mental health

Kamila Valieva took to Olympic ice again on Sunday, as fears were raised about her mental well-being ahead of an expected verdict by the Court of Arbitration for Sport over her right to stay at the Games.

The 15-year-old went through her usual warm-up routine at the figure skating practice hall while an ad-hoc CAS committee met to consider a series of appeals against the decision by the Russian Anti-Doping Agency to lift a provisional suspension imposed upon the skater following a positive test for the banned heart medication trimetazidine.

The International Testing Agency (ITA), the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and the International Skating Union (ISU) are challenging Valieva’s right to stay in the Games ahead of the start of the women’s singles competition on Tuesday.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC), whose interests in the case are being represented by the ITA, confirmed on Tuesday that mental health resources were available to Valieva in addition to those presumably being offered by her team.

“Mental help is always offered first of all by the team, but we have measures in place and safe-guarding officers,” IOC spokesman Mark Adams said. “The support is there but the primary obligation is for the team is to look after its athletes.”

stars of the day

Reigning world champions Holland claimed an emotional short-track speed-skating gold in the women’s 3000m relay.

The Dutch quartet of Suzanne Schulting, Selma Poutsma, Xandra Velzeboer and Yara van Kerkhof broke their own Olympic record as they posted a winning time of four minutes 03.409 seconds.

Schulting and Van Kerkhof were part of the 2018 Olympic bronze medal-winning team which also included Lara Van Ruijven, who died aged 27 in July 2020. The gold medalists raised their hands to the sky on the podium in tribute to Van Ruijven.

Fail of the day

A snowman is built outside the National Aquatics Center during day nine of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Games in China (Andrew Milligan/PA)

(PA Wire)

The weather was the biggest cause of problems on Sunday, with heavy snow causing the postponement of women’s ski-slopestyle qualifying at Genting Snow Park.

With no improvement forecast, officials made the decision to re-schedule the event for Monday morning, with the equivalent men’s competition pushed back to the following day.

Conditions also forced the cancellation of women’s downhill training, while 33 competitors – over one third of the field – failed to complete the first run of the men’s giant-slalom.

Picture of the day

Snow covered lanterns in the Olympic Park during day nine of the 2022 Winter Olympic Games (Andrew Milligan/PA)

(PA Wire)

social media moment

what’s on tomorrow

Great Britain’s Kirsty Muir will contest the slopestyle qualifiers on Monday (Andrew Milligan/PA)

(PA Wire)

The verdict on Valieva’s Olympic future will dominate the news agenda on Monday, but it is also a busy day for Great Britain. Kirsty Muir bids to improve on her fifth-place finish in the Big Air when she goes in the slopestyle qualifiers (0130GMT). Katie Ormerod is also in the snowboard Big Air (0130), while Brad Hall and Nick Gleeson get their two-man bobsleigh campaign underway (1205) and Lilah Fear and Lewis Gibson complete their ice dancing program (1000).

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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