Russia’s Alina Zagitova took the lead in the ladies event of the International Skating Union (ISU) European Figure Skating Championships with victory over compatriot Evgenia Medvedeva in the short programme competition in Moscow.
Medvedeva was hoping to mark her comeback from a broken foot by taking the top prize in the Russian capital but her hopes were dashed at the Megasport Sport Palace by 15-year-old compatriot Zagitova,
She scored 80.27 points thanks to a cleanly-executed triple Lutz-triple loop combination to top the table at her first-ever European Championships.
As reported by TSN, after her victory, Zagitova said: "It's my first Europeans, but I was able to calm down and I was able to show what I have worked on with my coaches.
"I am very pleased to have finally skated a clean short programme."
Despite only coming second today with a score of 78.57 points, 18-year-old Medvedeva still has a chance of securing her third straight European title during Sunday’s free skate event.
"I did not feel the injury, everything has healed," Medvedeva, unbeaten since November 2015, said after today’s competition.
"I've been longing to come back to the ice and compete.
"I'm not happy with the skate but there's time for me to tighten it up."
Day two of the competition also saw the second pairs event take place with home athletes taking the top three places.
Evgenia Tarasova and Vladimir Morozov recovered from yesterday's disappointment of finishing fifth by coming out on top thanks to a score of 151.23.
Following her team's victory, Tarasova said: "After the short program we were only in fifth place, because of my big mistake.
"So I was really mad at myself and today I pulled myself together to skate much better.
“For us, it was definitely harder to win the second time.
"Last year, we skated well in the short and in the free, but this time we did not do well in the short.
Tarasova and Morozov were a long way ahead of compatriots Ksenia Stolbova and Fedor Klimov and Natalia Zabiiako and Alexander Enbert, who came second and third with points totals of 138.96 and 137.23 respectively.
The ISU) European Figure Skating Championships continue tomorrow with the first ice dance event of the championship followed by the second men's free skating competition.