Five stand-out moments from the Beijing Winter Olympics

A memorable Games in China with highlights and lowlights at both ends of the spectrum

Nathan Chen dazzled in Beijing to the strains of ‘Rocket Man’ (Andrew Milligan/PA)
Nathan Chen dazzled in Beijing to the strains of ‘Rocket Man’ (Andrew Milligan/PA)

A Russian figure skater threatened to dazzle before a shocking truth emerged, a Rocket Man also ruled the ice, and a final-day surge ensured the last weekend was all about Eve.

Here the PA news agency picks out five highlights from the Winter Olympics in Beijing.

MISS PERFECT

Kamila Valieva shone in her short program before calamity ensued (Andrew Milligan/PA)

Fifteen-year-old Kamila Valieva dazzled on her debut on Olympic ice, threatening to eclipse her own world record in the short program. Many were already calling her the greatest ever – before a positive dope test that evolved into one of the biggest scandals in Olympic history.

NATHAN CHEN

Nathan Chen spectacularly exorcised the demons of Pyeongchang (Andrew Milligan/PA)

Four years ago in Pyeongchang, Nathan Chen blew his chance of gold with a series of falls in his short program. In Beijing, as his great rival Yuzuru Hanyu faltered, Chen brought the house down with a glorious skate to Elton John’s ‘Rocket Man’ – taking gold and a tribute from Elton himself into the bargain.

ALL ABOUT EVE

Emotional Eve Muirhead charged to Olympic gold (Andrew Milligan/PA)

Twenty years after Rhona Martin delivered her famous ‘Stone of Destiny’, curling finally came home as Eve Muirhead staged a great escape against Sweden in the semi-finals then thumped Japan in the final to earn Olympic gold at the fourth time of asking. A silver for Bruce Mouat’s men helped put the sport firmly back on the map.

MUIR THE MERRIER

Kirsty Muir produced some rare bright moments for the British team (Andrew Milligan/PA)

Amid a wholly forgettable Games for Great Britain – curling apart – 17-year-old Scot Kirsty Muir shone out, securing a brilliant fifth place in the ski Big Air and another top 10 finish later in the slopestyle. Muir will head back for her Highers having inspired a new generation of freestyle stars.

LINDSEY JACOBELLIS

Lindsey Jacobellis secured Olympic redemption with two golds in Beijing (Andrew Milligan/PA)

Known for her mistake on the final jump that cost her gold in Turin in 2006, Jacobellis, now 36, spectacularly exorcised those Olympic demons by storming to an unexpected and long-awaited gold in the women’s snowboard-cross. She later teamed up with Nick Baumgartner to also win gold in the team event.

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