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Yuzuru Hanyu participates in 40-minute practice

by Jack Gallagher

Staff Writer

Yuzuru Hanyu on Wednesday went through his third official practice since arriving for the Pyeongchang Games.

The superstar took the ice in the practice rink underneath Gangneung Ice Arena shortly after the pairs short program had ended upstairs and skated for 40 minutes in a group that included teammates Shoma Uno and Keiji Tanaka.

After a fairly intensive practice in the main rink on Tuesday morning, Hanyu took a more cautious approach this time, focusing mostly on strokes and steps.

He attempted just a handful of jumps, including a quad salchow, quad toe loop and a triple axel.

When Hanyu’s short program music to Chopin’s Ballade No. 1 played, he went through a run-through of it without any jumps. The question now is if that was just a precautionary measure to avoid injury or if there was some other physical reason.

Hanyu departed following the training session without making any comments to the media other than “thank you” as he walked through the mixed zone.

The draw for Friday’s men’s short program was held later Wednesday, with Hanyu drawing position No. 25 — the first skater in the final group of six. Hanyu will take the ice at 1:48 p.m.

Shoma Uno drew position No. 28, which means he will skate at 2:07 p.m.

Keiji Tanaka is in the preceding group at No. 22. Tanaka will begin his short program at 1:05 p.m.

American Nathan Chen will skate immediately after Hanyu in position No. 26.

Javier Fernandez will follow Uno onto the ice in position No. 29.