Japan Skaters Get in Final Tune-Up for World Team Trophy
In preparation for the World Team Trophy, Kaori Sakamoto, owner of back-to-back world titles, spent extra time working on her spins at center ice.
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World champion Kaori Sakamoto worked on her free skate during the afternoon session of the official practice day on Wednesday, April 12 at Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium ahead of the World Team Trophy women's short program on Thursday evening.
Sakamoto, who turned 23 on April 9, practiced her program to "Elastic Heart" and "Lovation" as the music boomed out of the arena speakers overhead. She looked sharp. The Beijing Olympic bronze medalist spent extra time working on her spins at center ice after her run-through.
With fellow world champion Shoma Uno withdrawing due to a right ankle injury earlier in the week, Sakamoto will now be looked upon to lead the Japan team as it attempts to win the World Team Trophy for the third time and post its first victory since 2017 in the biennial event.
Since winning her second straight world title in Saitama in March, Sakamoto has been participating in shows and enjoying the break from competition.
"After the world championships I was freed from stress," Sakamoto stated. "I hope I can be healthy without any injuries."
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Author: Jack Gallagher
The author is a veteran sports journalist and one of the world's foremost figure skating experts. Find articles and podcasts by Jack on his author page, and find him on Twitter @sportsjapan.
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