The South Korean media is beginning to report on the 2014 Sochi Olympic figure skating controversy where many believe that defending Olympic figure skating champion Yuna Kim was cheated out of a gold medal by the Russians. You can read more about the controversy at the below link:
Here is the evidence that the Chosun Ilbo was able to dig up that shows that the judging was in fact suspicious:
Figure skating champion Kim Yu-na performed near-flawlessly in both the short and free programs at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics on Wednesday and Thursday, but opaque judges’ decisions skewed the result toward her Russian rival.
The Chosun Ilbo obtained a copy of the score sheet and found that seven of the nine judges gave Kim higher marks than Russian figure skater Adelina Sotnikova. But the other two judges not only gave Sotnikova the highest score but by an enormous margin. [Chosun Ilbo]
You can read more at the link, but I think it is significant that 7 out of the 9 judges rated Kim Yuna higher and yet she lost due to the inflated scores from just two other judges. So who are these two judges? Since the scoring by the judges is kept anonymous we may never know, but I would not be surprised if the two inflated scores came from these two judges:
Two of their replacements were Ukrainian Yuri Balkov, who was kicked out of judging for a year after being tape-recorded by a Canadian judge trying to fix the Nagano ice dancing competition, and Alla Shekhovtseva, a Russian judge who is married to Russian federation general director Valentin Pissev. The two other new long program judges were from Estonia and France, which was the country that conspired with Russia to try to fix the pairs and ice dancing competition at the 2002 Olympic Games in Salt Lake City.
“The (judging) panel made me wish that the United States and Canada had split up into many different countries,” said choreographer Lori Nichol, who works with Kostner and fourth-place finisher Gracie Gold of the United States, among others. “It certainly was a different panel tonight.”
She was referring to the fact that in the days of the Soviet Union, only one judge represented the entire country, all its republics. Now, judges from several former Soviet republics can be on one panel, as was the case Thursday night.
In other words, the Cold War is alive and well in the Olympic figure skating venue. [USA Today]
You can read more at the link, but it just seems ridiculous to me that these two are allowed to judge in the Olympics. One is corrupt and the other has to huge a conflict of interest to be on a judging panel. Unless the IOC releases who scored what that disproves that these two judges are the ones that inflated Sotnikova scores the controversy is going to linger. Hopefully reformers challenge the anonymous scoring system because if it is not changed it will only continue to provide cover for possible cheating and leave many people believing once again what a farce Olympic judging can be.
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