Winter Olympics 2014 Cold Snapshots: Spine surgery for Russian freestyle skier Maria Komissarova


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The Independent Online

Russian freestyle skier Maria Komissarova has undergone a successful six-and-half-hour operation after breaking her spine during training, a Russian Freestyle Federation spokesman has said. The 23-year-old suffered the injury during a practice session for this week's ski-cross event at the PSX Olympic ski-cross venue in Rosa Khutor Extreme Park yesterday. She was then immediately rushed to the Krasnaya Polyanskaya Hospital, which was purpose built for the Games. "The operation lasted six-and-a-half hours and it was successful," Russian Freestyle Federation spokesman Mikhail Vezhba told Russian news agency R-Sport last night.

Chemmy not feeling golden

Last week Briton's Chemmy Alcott described her 19th-place finish in the Alpine Skiing downhill as being "like a gold" because of her injury set-backs. Yesterday, she finished 23rd in the Super-G, but there was no elation this time. "The other day I had tears of happiness and now I've got tears of frustration," the 31-year-old said. "It's amazing how quickly your expectations run away with you." Alcott shouldn't be too downbeat, however, as 18 of the 49 starters failed to complete the race on tricky Rosa Khutor piste, with Lara Gut, who finished fourth, labelling the conditions "a disaster".

Neilson can't terminate rivals

He may be sporting the Games' most terrifying helmet, but Canada's Eric Neilson could not scare his way into the medal positions in the skeleton last night. His helmet, a cross between The Terminator and Jurassic Park – complete with menacing red eyes – attracted plenty of attention, but the main spotlight fell on winner Alexander Tretiakov, who kept it simple in an all-black number.

Twitter treats

OLYMPIC CHAMPION - ahhhhhhh! so speechless, so proud! thanks to all of you! xoxo

Anna Fenninger, winner of the women's Super-G

What a crazy few days it's been! However back to earth this morning with no loo roll...typical!

Lizzy Yarnold, Britain's skeleton winner

Huge congratulations to Lizzy Yarnold, what an amazing performance!!

Jessica Ennis-Hill

Feel so sorry for Elise Christie, so hope it comes right on the 1000m for her, needs a bit of luck.

Sharron Davies, former GB swimming silver medallist

What's on today

What to watch?

It's a downhill start for the Alpine Skiing with the men's Super-G event at 6am (UK time). It was meant to start an hour later, but has been moved forward due to the forecast of more warm weather. Aksel Lund Svindal of Norway, the defending Olympic champion, starts as the favourite.

Star of the day

Ole Einar Bjoerndalen – remember the name. The 40-year-old Norwegian could make Winter Olympic history if he wins a medal in the biathlon mass start (3pm UK time). Following his gold in the biathlon sprint last week, a medal today will make him the most successful Winter Olympian ever. He has won 12 medals, level with his fellow countryman Bjorn Daehlie, who competed in cross-county skiing between 1992 and 1998.

Brit watch

All eyes will be on Zoe Gillings in the women's snowboard cross (from 7am UK). She is competing in her third Winter Olympics, finishing 15th in the event in 2010, and eighth in 2006. So if she improves seven places every Games, will she get her hands on a medal today?