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Figure skating star Hanyu talks Beijing Winter Olympics, vows to stay competitive

Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan is seen after winning the bronze medal following the men's free skate program at the World Figure Skating Championships in Stockholm, Sweden, on March 27, 2021. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

TOKYO -- Two-time Olympic champion Yuzuru Hanyu dropped hints about possibly competing at next year's Beijing Winter Olympics during an online interview on March 28, a day after his third-place finish at the World Figure Skating Championships in Stockholm.

    "If the Olympics come during a situation where I'm aiming to pull off a quad axel, then I'll think about it. If the games lie along that path," Hanyu said. It is the first time the 26-year-old Japanese figure skating sensation has commented on going to the 2022 Winter Games.

    During the interview, Hanyu also clearly vowed to stay competitive next season.

    "It's not so much about whether I'll quit competitive skating. I think I probably wouldn't be satisfied, even for the rest of my life, unless I can make the axel," he said, stressing once again that he will keep striving for his career goal: the unprecedented quadruple axel.

    About his programs for next season, Hanyu revealed, "What I'm thinking is that I'll include the quad axel in my free program performance (to the tune of) 'Heaven and Earth.'"

    In December last year, Hanyu clinched his fifth title -- and the first in five years -- at the Japan Figure Skating Championships, and was aiming to claim his third victory -- and the first in four years -- at the Worlds in Stockholm, which ended on March 27, but ended up with the bronze.

    (Japanese original by Hitoshi Kurasawa, Sports News Department)

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