Olympics: Japan's Hanyu stars as Plushenko bows out
SOCHI, Russia (AFP) - Japanese star Yuzuru Hanyu gave a stunning display to put him on the road to Olympic gold as Russian veteran Yevgeny Plushenko called time on his long career after withdrawing injured from the Sochi Games.
In a dramatic night of action at the Iceberg Skating Palace 19-year-old Hanyu set a new world record score in the men's short programme to open up a 3.93-point lead on three-time world champion Patrick Chan of Canada.
Two-time gold Olympic medallist Plushenko had earlier stunned the crowd when he withdrew before he competed complaining of a recurring back injury.
"Amateur sport is finished for me. Maybe not in the way that I wanted. But I leave with a gold medal, that is also great," the 31-year-old said.