Sunday, May 17, 2009

Sasha Cohen plots return to competition

After months of speculation, Sasha Cohen has an answer.

Yes, she will return to competition and bid to qualify for her third Olympic team.

"I've been thinking about it for a while," said the 24-year-old. "The whole magic of the Olympics is coming up. I want to challenge myself. I think I have enough inside of me.

"As the time to the Olympics came closer, I knew I had to decide, figure out which Grand Prix [competitions] I wanted to do, get a master plan. I'm actually making a more official announcement next week."

Cohen, who watched the recent world championships in Los Angeles, said she was impressed but not intimidated by the performances of skaters like world champion Yu-Na Kim; silver medalist Joannie Rochette; and bronze medalist Miki Ando, as well as 2008 world champion Mao Asada, who failed to win a medal despite landing a triple Axel-double toe combination in her free skate.

"We watched a little bit of worlds... we lost the satellite a couple of times. It was a lot of fun seeing Evan [Lysacek] win," she said.

"Yes, there are a lot of great skaters right now, but this is more of a personal thing for me. I miss the challenge and I miss that part of my life."

Asked if she thought she could cope with the ever-growing challenges of the International Judging System (IJS), with its precise requirements for high-level spins, footwork and spirals -- not to mention the triple-triple combinations of younger athletes like Kim and Asada -- Cohen replied, "Definitely, yeah. I've spent time training this winter and spring and I've already improved a lot."

Full article.

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