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Orser coming to Korea for first time since split

Figure skating coach Brian Orser is coming to Korea next week for the first time since parting with Olympic medalist Kim Yu-na, his agent confirmed Tuesday.

Orser is coming for the ISU World Junior Figure Skating Championships, slated to run from Feb. 26 to Mar. 6 in Gangneung, Gangwon Province.

Orser, the 1984 and 1988 Olympic silver medalist, is currently coaching 16-year-old American Christina Gao. 

Figure skating coach Brian Orser with Kim Yu-na during the 2010 Winter Olympics. (Yonhap News)
Figure skating coach Brian Orser with Kim Yu-na during the 2010 Winter Olympics. (Yonhap News)

Gao will compete at the competition, a spokesman of IMG World, Orser’s agency, told The Korea Herald.

The spokesman also added that Orser might have a chance during his stay to explain the reason behind his split with Kim.

The Korean figure skater first teamed up with Orser in 2006. The figure star won the gold medal at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics with a world record, becoming the first Korean to accomplish the feat. She also won a world championship and two Grand Prix finals under the guidance of Orser.

However, the world No.1 parted ways with the Canadian after nabbing the gold medal in Vancouver last year.

The news initially triggered a wave of curiosity from the media and fans. The Canadian coach, who had been guiding Kim since 2006, claimed that he was unfairly sacked by Kim’s agency without a clear reason.

But Kim fired back at her former coach, accusing him of making false allegations over their split. Kim hired American Olympic bronze medalist Peter Oppegard as her new coach at the end of 2010 and relocated her training base from Toronto to Los Angeles.

Meanwhile, Kim is now focusing on preparing for the ISU World Championships slated for March 21 to 27 in Tokyo.

Kim has not skated in competition since finishing second at the World Championship in Turin, Italy in March 2010. She admitted at the time that she had lost the motivation to compete after the Vancouver Olympic Games.

The championships in March will be her first time competing at the world championships since then, and she is expected to face her arch rival, Japan’s Mao Asada, the Vancouver silver medalist.

By Oh Kyu-wook (596story@heraldcorp.com)

<한글 요약>

오서 코치, 김연아와 결별후 첫 한국 방문 예정

김연아의 전 코치 브라이언 오서가 다음주 한국을 방문할 예정이다. 이번 방문은 오서 코치와 김연아의 결별후 첫 방문으로 2월 26일부터 3월 6일까지 열리는 ISU 세계 주니어 피겨 스케이팅 챔피언쉽에 참가하기 위해서이다.

오서는 현재 16세 미국인 선수 크리스티나 가오의 코치를 맡고 있다.

오서의 에이전시 IMG World는 가오가 이번 대회에 참가할 것이라고 코리아헤럴드와의 인터뷰에서 밝혔다.

Brian Orser (Yonhap News)
Brian Orser (Yonhap News)

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