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Japan’s Yuma Kagiyama stumbled to a seventh-place start after the short skate at the ISU Grand Prix Gran Premio d’Italia on Friday in the men’s program, while Satoko Miyahara was fourth in the women’s event.

Kagiyama, the runner-up at the world championships last season, made multiple mistakes with his quad jumps and had to settle for 80.53 points, behind compatriot Kazuki Tomono who scored 83.91 to place sixth.

Jin Boyang of China sits top on 97.89 at this year’s third event on the ISU Grand Prix circuit, originally scheduled in China but moved due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Appearing as the final skater, 18-year-old Kagiyama revealed he failed to fend off the anxiety he had felt during a six-minute practice session where his quad salchow began to go awry.

“I became scared of mistakes,” said Kagiyama, who first failed to land his quad Salchow cleanly before turning a quad-triple toeloop combination into a triple toeloop.

“I panicked with the Salchow mistake. I was aiming for a mistake-free performance so I’m really frustrated…I just have to take the plunge in the free skating,” he said.

Japan's Yuma Kagiyama performs during the men's short program at the ISU Grand Prix Gran Premio d'Italia in Turin, Italy, on Friday. | AFP-JIJI
Japan’s Yuma Kagiyama performs during the men’s short program at the ISU Grand Prix Gran Premio d’Italia in Turin, Italy, on Friday. | AFP-JIJI

There are signs of improvement for Miyahara, meanwhile, as she scored 70.85, only 2.67 behind Belgian leader Loena Hendrickx’s 73.25. Mai Mihara is also in with a shout after coming fifth on 70.46.

After finishing a career-worst 19th at last season’s world championships, 23-year-old Miyahara had begun this season’s Grand Prix opener seventh in Skate America.

Her resurgence in the Olympic season continued in Italy as her program component score stood only behind Russian world champion Anna Shcherbakova.

“I’m really happy to get much higher points than I was expecting,” she said. “I’m starting to get a positive feeling.”

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