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Plushenko plans to skate in Sochi despite surgery

Jan 30, 2013, 6:15 PM EDT

Richard Mackson-US PRESSWIRE Richard Mackson-US PRESSWIRE

Torino figure skating champ Yevgeny Plushenko says he’ll skate at his hometown Sochi Games next February despite an upcoming operation on an intervertebral disc in his lower back.

Plushenko pulled out of the Euro championships last week after being unable to adjust his routine after recently sustained injuries. But he has more than a full year to recover, and will still aim for his modern record fourth Olympic medal next year.

“The complete post-operational recovery will take a long time, but not too long to affect his preparations for next season and its main event, the Olympics,” his coach, Alexei Mishin, said Wednesday.

“[Thursday] he will undergo surgery but we are not going to change the schedule of our preparations. The medics said that [Yevgeny] will be able to walk and swim just four weeks after the operation.”

Plushenko effectively retired after Vancouver, but has since state his “ineradicable” and “unshakeable” desire to compete in Sochi regardless of injury or the fact that he’ll be 31 when the Games roll around.

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