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Japan's Asada headed for possible split with coach

Japan's Asada headed for possible split with coach

Less than three weeks before the World Figure Skating Championships, Mao Asada appears headed for a breakup with coach Rafael Arutunian, an official with the Japan Skating Federation said Wednesday.
Asada, No. 1 in the International Skating Union's rankings, returned to Japan after winning the Four Continents in South Korea last week and will train in Japan until the March 17-23 world championships in Gothenburg, Sweden.
Arutunian was not present at the Four Continents, which Asada won.
"She has not formally severed ties with him but appears headed in that direction," said JSF spokesman Tatsuro Matsumura. "She wants to be able to train in the best possible surroundings."
Calls to Asada's agent on Wednesday were unanswered.
Kyodo news agency reported Tuesday that Asada will head to Sweden without a coach and will look for a new one after the world championships.
The 17-year-old Asada, runner-up at last year's world championships, has trained under Arutunian in the United States since 2006.
A new training facility opened near Asada's hometown of Nagoya and she is expected to train there before the world championships.


Updated : 2020-12-02 05:53 GMT+08:00