Aliev (RUS) grabs lead in Men's Short Program at ISU World Junior Championships

- Taipei City, Chinese Taipei

The ISU World Junior Figure Skating Championships 2017 opened in Taipei, Chinese Taipei, Wednesday with the Men’s and Pairs Short Programs. Taipei hosts the ISU World Junior Figure Skating Championships for the first time, but has hosted the ISU Four Continents Figure Skating Championships before. 184 skaters from 43 ISU members have been entered for the Championships.

WJFSC-Day1-MenSP-Aliev2-653480786Dmitri Aliev (RUS) captures Men’s Short Program

Russia’s Dmitri Aliev captured the Men’s Short Program, but Jun Hwan Cha of Korea and Alexander Samarin of Russia are only a little over a point behind in second and third place. All three men achieved a new personal best score.

Performing to “Oblivion” by Astor Piazzolla, Aliev nailed a triple Axel, triple Lutz-triple toeloop combination, the required triple loop and picked up a level four for two spins. The ISU Junior Grand Prix Final Champion earned 83.48 points. “I think I did a good job today. I am very pleased to have set a seasons best and with my component scores. For today it was very good”, the Russian Junior Champion said.

Cha produced a triple Lutz-triple toe, triple Axel, triple loop and two level-four spins as well in his routine to “A Chorus Line” to score 82.34 points. “The short program was good today. I tried not to be nervous and to be calm. After my Nationals I returned to Toronto to train and I have worked hard on my expression and my choreography”, the ISU Junior Grand Prix Final bronze medalist shared.

Samarin’s program to “Come With Me Now” by Kongos featured a triple Axel, triple loop-triple toe and strong spins, but the triple loop was somewhat shaky. The ISU Junior Grand Prix Final silver medalist collected 82.23 points. “I am looking calmly at today’s result, even though I got a personal best. But this doesn’t affect me, because the main task is still to come tomorrow”, the Muscovite commented.

Alexander Petrov (RUS) follows in fourth and remains in medal contention at 81.29 points. Vincent Zhou (USA) placed fifth (78.97 points) and Kevin Aymoz (FRA) rounds up the top six. 2016 World Junior silver medalist Nicolas Nadeau (CAN) came seventh (77.20 points). Defending champion Daniel Samohin (ISR) made errors on all three jumping passes to finish 16th (67.00 points).

A total of 45 Men competed in the Short Program and the top 24 advance to the Free Skating on Wednesday. For more information, full entry lists and results please see: www.isu.org and http://www.wjc2017.com/. #WorldJFigure

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