Miyahara to skip planned season opener in Finland

Kyodo

Japan’s top female skater, Satoko Miyahara, will withdraw from next month’s Finlandia Trophy where she had been scheduled to open her season, the Japan Skating Federation said Monday.

Miyahara, who sat out the latter half of last winter due to a stress fracture in her left groin area, has healed steadily from her injury but wants to save her energy and place priority on preparing for the Grand Prix series, federation director Yoshiko Kobayashi said.

The 19-year-old was initially planning to take part in the Finlandia Trophy in Finland on Oct. 6-8, but now her first competition of the upcoming Winter Olympic season will be the NHK Trophy, the fourth of six Grand Prix series events, on Nov. 10-12 in Osaka.

The 2015 world silver medalist won her third straight national title in women’s singles last December, but the injury prevented her from appearing in major events such as the Four Continents championships and the Asian Winter Games in February and the world championships from late March.

She performed at an ice show in July, but withdrew from another show in early August after spraining her left foot and also sat out a training session that was open to the media on Wednesday as she was not in good condition.

The Pyeongchang Winter Games are scheduled to take place in South Korea in February.