- What: The 2022 World Figure Skating Championships
- Who: The top four contenders to take home the Women’s singles title
- Where: Montpellier, France
- When: March 21-27, 2022
An annual figure skating competition sanctioned by the International Skating Union, the World Championships are considered the most prestigious event of the ISU Figure Skating Championships. Second perhaps only to Olympic titles, the Figure Skating World Championships are a more consistent measure of crowning who is the best in the world. In the 2021 edition of the competition, Russia’s Anna Shcherbakova was able to lock down her first-ever world title.
Will the 17-year old be able to continue her rise in the figure skating scene? We take a closer look below at who are the favorites at the 2022 competition (based on their current world rankings) and who will be selected as the next female world champion.
|Odds to Win 2022 Women's World Figure Skating Championship|
The Number One Contender: Alexandra Trusova (Odds TBA)
Known as the “Russian Rocket” and “Quad Queen,” Trusova is another bright young star in the field of women’s figure skating. While she has yet to win a gold medal at the World Championships, she is still recognized as the current No. 1 ranked athlete in the sport. The Russian is coming off a bronze medal performance at the 2021 World Championship in Stockholm and also a bronze at the 2020 European Championships in Graz. Trusova is the first female skater to land the quad flip, quad Lutz and quad toe loop jumps in competition and currently holds four Guinness World Records for her feats in competitions.
Number Two: Anna Shcherbakova (Odds TBA)
The 2021 World champion, Shcherbakova is looking to make more history in France in 2022 against the stacked field. Though she is just 17-years old, Shcherbakova has made a name for herself by locking down titles at big competitions. In addition to her gold medal crown in 2021, she also was the 2020 European Championships silver medalist, the 2019 Grand Prix Finals silver medalist and the 2019 Skate America champion. In terms of rankings, you could put Shcherbakova and Trusova almost at 1 and 1-A for the purpose of this list. The Russian has also admitted that Nathan Chen (a three-time world champion) is one of her biggest role models in the sport – so who better to follow as your lead for repeating as world champion?
2021 World Champion❤️ pic.twitter.com/qDnJJJP383
— TeamShcherbakova｜Анна Щербакова｜Anna Shcherbakova (@Dear_AnyaS) March 27, 2021
Number three: Rika Kihira (Odds TBA)
The third highest ranked women’s singles skater in the world, recognized by the International Skating Union (ISU), Kihira is very familiar with sitting atop the podium. The native of Nishinomiya, Japan, Kihira is a two-time Four Continents champion (2019, 2020), the 2018 Grand Prix Final champion, and a two-time Japanese national champion (2019, 2020). Though she hurt her right ankle in July of this year, she is still one to watch when the competition kicks off in March of next year. Regarded as one of the most complete skaters in the world, Kihira’s combination of technical and artistic grace make her a podium threat in each competition she enters.
Final contender: Kaori Sakamoto (Odds TBA)
The most tenured competitor on this list (at a spry 21 years of age), Sakamoto has had a nice start to her young career. She is the 2018 Four Continents champion, a two-time Skate America silver medalist (2017 and 2018) and the 2019 Japanese national champion. More recently, Sakamoto won the 2021 NHK Trophy and also the silver medal at the 2021 All-Japan Figure Skating Championships. The biggest longshot on this list, Sakamoto does have the most experience in big-time competitions to fall back on.
Prediction In a sport where repeat world champions are extremely rare, look for Trusova to lock down her first world championship. In what will be a classic showdown, the Russian Rocket will most likely battle Shcherbakova in the final stages of the competition
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