Mai Mihara wins Universiade crown

The Japanese student claims her first win of the season at the Winter Universiade in Russia

Japan's Mai Mihara clinched the Winter Universiade figure skating crown in Krasnoyarsk, Russia

Despite being second best in the free skate, the 19-year-old had a sufficient lead from the short program to ensure her overall score of 220.68 points was enough to seal the title.

Kazakhstan's Elizabet Tursynbaeva produced the best free skate of the day to score 214.77 points overall with home favourite Stanislava Konstatinova completing the podium with 205.91 points.

Japan figure skater Mai Mihara celebrates after her free skate

Mihara was once again flawless in her program, opening with an effortless triple Lutz-triple toeloop combination.

The Konan University student followed up with double Axel and even included a triple jump combination in her routine - a triple Lutz-double toe-double toeloop.

The Four Continents third place finisher amassed 144.76 points for her efforts, leaving her just 2.44 points shy of Tursynbaeva's top score.

But two days of solid skating was enough to wrap up the title by 5.91 points.

Five-time Kazakhstan champion Tursynbaeva, did not get off to a good start when she fell on her quadruple Salchow attempt.

But this season's Four Continent's runner-up quickly put that behind her to pull off a beautifully executed a triple Lutz and went on to jump a triple flip and triple loop.

The Kazakh Academy of Sports and Tourism student then upped the ante with a series of combination jumps including a triple Salchow-triple toeloop combination and a double Axel-triple toeloop combination.

Her technical skills were matched by her graceful performance and footwork on ice.

 Kazakhstan's Elizabet Tursynbaeva

Despite losing 1 point for the initial fall, she racked up 147.20 points to top the free skate scoreboard. Tursynbaeva's combined scored leapfrogged her from fourth after the short program to second place.

It's her fourth podium of the season after leaving coach Brian Orser to return to Eteri Tutberidze who also coaches PyeongChang 2018 champion Alina Zagitova.

Konstantinova, in her first full season as a senior, appeased the home crowd by completing the podium.

Russia's Stanislava Konstantinova in action


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