Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Hanyu won gold with injured ankle 'only 20-30pc better'



Hanyu won gold with injured ankle 'only 20-30pc better'

Japan's Yuzuru Hanyu performs during the figure skating gala event during the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympics on February 25. AFP
Japan's Yuzuru Hanyu performs during the figure skating gala event during the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympics on February 25. AFP

Hanyu won gold with injured ankle 'only 20-30pc better'

Japan’s “Ice Prince” Yuzuru Hanyu revealed today that he clinched figure skating Olympic gold despite his injured ankle being at barely a quarter of full fitness.

The 23-year-old told an overflowing press conference on his return from Pyeongchang that he had spent his time off the ice studying his injury online.

“To be honest, if I compare the situation of my ankle now from the worst time, the pain has only improved by 20-30 percent,” said Hanyu.

“However, despite this, with the use of painkillers, I was able to achieve a gold medal.”

To national outpourings of joy, the Japanese superstar became the first man to capture back-to-back Olympic figure skating gold medals in 66 years.

Japan was distraught when he fell and twisted his ankle attempting the ultra-tough quadruple Lutz jump during practice on the eve of the NHK Trophy in November, threatening his Olympic participation.

Hanyu’s recovery was completed in secrecy with the Japanese media poring over every snippet of news or hint from his camp as to whether he would be able to compete in Pyeongchang.

Hanyu today acted out his next challenge for the media: the quadruple Axel. It is a jump requiring four and a half rotations which is so technically difficult that no skater has yet managed to execute it.

After winning a second gold, his goal now was to complete his “dream” of landing the quadruple Axel in competition, he said.

He added that he “wants to try to challenge” for an unprecedented quintuple jump, something his coach has encouraged him to believe he can achieve.

Hanyu also revealed an unusual gold medal-winning diet: he always eats rice before a competition as he said it gives him power to complete jumps and twists

“Maybe this is very Japanese, but personally, bread, cereals and pasta don’t give me power.

“Actually, I’m not really that interested in meals . . . I sometimes go to McDonalds, I drink fizzy soft drinks and I sometimes have chips,” said Hanyu. “No matter what I eat, I never seem to put on any weight.”

MOST VIEWED

  • NY sisters inspired by Khmer heritage

    Growing up in Brooklyn, New York, Cambodian-American sisters Edo and Eyen Chorm have always felt a deep affinity for their Cambodian heritage and roots. When the pair launched their own EdoEyen namesake jewellery brand in June, 2020, they leaned heavily into designs inspired by ancient Khmer

  • Cambodia records first Omicron community case

    The Ministry of Health on January 9 reported 30 new Covid-19 cases, 29 of which were imported and all were confirmed to be the Omicron variant. The ministry also reported 11 recoveries and no new deaths. Earlier on January 9, the ministry also announced that it had detected the Kingdom's

  • The effects of the USD interest rate hike on Cambodian economy

    Experts weigh in on the effect of a potential interest rate expansion by the US Federal Reserve on a highly dollarised Cambodia Anticipation of the US Federal Reserve’s interest rate hike in March is putting developing economies on edge, a recent blog post by

  • PM eyes Myanmar peace troika

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has suggested that ASEAN member states establish a tripartite committee or diplomatic troika consisting of representatives from Cambodia, Brunei and Indonesia that would be tasked with mediating a ceasefire in Myanmar. The premier also requested that Nippon Foundation chairman Yohei Sasakawa

  • Kampot tourism quay ‘90% done’

    Construction on Kampot International Tourism Port – a 4ha quay in Teuk Chhou district about 6km west of Kampot town – has fallen off track, reaching 90 per cent completion, according to a senior Ministry of Tourism official last week. The project is now planned to be finished

  • Demining rat ‘hero’ Magawa dead at 8

    A landmine-hunting rat that was awarded a gold medal for heroism for clearing ordnance from the Cambodian countryside has died, his charity said on January 11. Magawa, a giant African pouched rat originally from Tanzania, helped clear mines from about 225,000sqm of land – the equivalent of 42