UPDATE1: Figure skating: Mihara 4th after women's SP at Four Continents


Japan's Mai Mihara placed fourth after the women's short program Thursday at the Four Continents Figure Skating Championships.

The 17-year-old Mihara scored 66.51 points in a largely error-free performance on her debut in the competition at Gangneung Ice Arena, while compatriots Rika Hongo and Wakaba Higuchi were ninth and 10th, respectively.

"I skated right until the end with a real feeling of enjoyment," said Mihara, who was 1.97 off her personal best.

"It's a bit disappointing that I was fourth but I am happy to be in the final group. I'm determined, whatever the circumstances, to skate through the free program without any mistakes."

Gabrielle Daleman took the lead with 68.25 ahead of fellow Canadian Kaetlyn Osmond, who scored 68.21. Elizabet Tursynbaeva of Kazakhstan was third with 66.87.

Japan's Satoko Miyahara won this event last year but is unable to defend her title due to a hip injury. Hongo was sent as her replacement.

In the ice dance, Japan's Kana Muramoto and Chris Reed were ninth in the short dance led by Canada's Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir. Emi Hirai and Marien de la Asuncion were 12th.

China's Sui Wenjing and Han Cong led the pairs. Sumire Suto and Francis Boudreau-Audet were 10th and Miu Suzaki and Ryuichi Kihara were 12th.

Japan's Olympic champion Yuzuru Hanyu is entered in the men's program which begins on Friday.

The Four Continents, only open to skaters from Asia, Africa, the Americas and Oceania, is also serving as a test event Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympics.


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