Shoma Uno Opens World Title Defense with Outstanding Short Program
A three-time Olympic medalist, Shoma Uno displayed technical aptitude and fantastic expression as he seeks to win consecutive world titles.
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SAITAMA ― World champion Shoma Uno lived up to his billing on Thursday night, March 23 as he grabbed a four-point lead after the short program at the World Figure Skating Championships at Saitama Super Arena. The three-time Olympic medalist was close to spectacular before an enraptured audience.
The 25-year-old star displayed a rare combination of technical aptitude and fantastic expression as he seeks to become the first Japanese man to win consecutive world titles. His line and edge were exemplary throughout his skate.
Uno is in first place with a score of 104.63, ahead of Ilia Malinin of the United States who is second at 100.38. South Korea's Jun Hwan Cha is third on 99.64, while Canada's Keegan Messing is fourth at 98.75.
Kazuki Tomono is seventh with 92.68, while Sota Yamamoto had a calamitous outing and finds himself out of medal contention in 17th place at 75.48.
Uno skated to "Gravity" and opened with a quadruple flip, followed by a quad toe loop/double toe loop combination jump, and went on to land a nice triple axel. He earned level fours on his spins and a level three on his step sequence.
"I think score-wise and as well as the content, it wasn't all that bad," Uno stated.
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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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