By Michael Pavitt

Russia were the last country to sweep the ladies podium in 2002 ©AFP/Getty ImagesRussia's female figure skaters backed up their performances in the short programme by sealing a clean sweep of the European Championship podium at the Ericsson Globe in Stockholm today.

The order of the podium however did change, with Elizaveta Tuktamysheva's performance in the free programme enough to see her move ahead of two-time world junior champion team mate Elena Radionova, who had led the competition after the short programme.

Tuktamysheva's performance featured several excellent combinations but her margin of victory proved to be narrow, as her combined score from the short and free programmes standing at 210.40, placing her just ahead of Radionova's 209.54.

"It is a very happy moment for me," said Tuktamysheva, whose score was a personal best.

"I think this was one of my best performances, but it is still not the maximum of what I can do.

"I am very glad that all three Russian girls skated a clean short and free program and I am excited to come out on top."

The Russian team proved to be completely dominant as their figure skating team collected all the medals as Anna Pogorilaya rounded off the podium, as they became the first team to scoop gold, silver and bronze medals in the women's event for 13 years, when they last accomplished the feat.

Elizaveta Tuktamysheva won European gold for the first time, having previously won a bronze medal ©AFP/Getty ImagesElizaveta Tuktamysheva won European gold for the first time, having previously won a bronze medal ©AFP/Getty Images

The gap between Pogorilaya and fourth placed finisher Joshi Helgesson of Sweden proved to be considerable - the Russian having accrued 191.81 points as a consequence of third place finishes in both programmes, while Helgesson could only manage 169.07 in front of her home crowd.

Joshi's sister Viktoria finished in fifth place, but despite the Swedish sisters acquitting themselves well, the focus will remain on the superb performance of the Russian team.

Action concludes in Stockholm tomorrow with the finale of the pairs competition.

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