Alina Zagitova, Eteri Tutberidze and Evgenia Medvedeva
According to media reports citing various sources, 20-year-old Russian figure skater Evgenia Medvedeva returned to the team of coach Eteri Tutberidze. Medvedeva has worked with her since childhood, but after the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics, where she won two silver medals, the skater stopped working with her mentor and moved to Toronto. There she began performing under the guidance of Canadian coach Brian Orser.
After the Olympics, Medvedeva did not hide her disappointment. She was clearly upset because she did not win gold, which went to another Russian figure skater, Alina Zagitova. The girls were often "played off". However, they really were never friends and considered each other rivals. As Eteri Tutberidze said, Medvedeva openly accused her of her second place and said that she should have left Zagitova in juniors for at least another year - then the gold medal at the Olympics would probably have gone to her.
Evgenia Medvedeva and Alina Zagitova
After the competition in South Korea, Eteri Tutberidze was really strongly criticized, accusing her of giving her wards unequal programs. She is often reproached for the fact that she can only work with very young athletes who perform incredibly complex elements and often become sensations in the world of sports. However, as soon as they get older, the coach's interest in her charges disappears, and she switches to other up-and-coming athletes. So, many of them, unable to withstand the psychological pressure, leave professional sports early, as Julia Lipnitskaya did.
Neither Medvedev nor Tutberidze commented on the news of the resumption of cooperation, but sources say that they will start working together today. In sports circles, Evgenia's return to Eteri is already spoken of as a fait accompli.
Return of Medvedeva to Tutberidze? I'm very glad. This is a worthy decision of two women,
- the famous coach Tatyana Tarasova commented on the news.
Eteri Tutberidze and Evgenia Medvedeva
Medvedev explained the decision to leave Tutberidze by the fact that she wanted development in her career.
I hope that time will pass and everyone will understand that this was the only possible option for both of us to continue working honestly. I still want to have a long career. Actually, because of this, such big changes are taking place,
- said Evgenia Medvedeva.
Under the guidance of a Canadian specialist, Medvedev won bronze at the World Championships, but was unable to make it to the Grand Prix finals, which is why she was criticized online and had to leave the Internet space for a while. Why she decided to return to her mentor is unknown.
It should be noted that Eteri Tutberidze is one of the most discussed and, perhaps, controversial Russian coaches. Despite the great successes of her wards, she is often criticized, including colleagues. So, last year a big scandal broke out on the network between Evgeni Plushenko and Eteri Tutberidze, the reason for which was the temporary departure from sports of Alina Zagitova, who was coached by Eteri. 18-year-old Zagitova explained her break in her professional career by her desire to work in the Ice Age show on Channel One, for which three-time Olympic champion Irina Rodnina suggested excluding her from the Russian national team. Representatives of Tutberidze accused Plushenko of enticing her athletes, and he, in turn, replied that children from her school come to him voluntarily.