Valieva 'happy to be on the ice' after Olympic doping controversy
Teenage Russian figure skater Kamila Valieva, who became the focus of a doping controversy at the Winter Olympics, returned to action on Sunday and said: "I'm happy to be on the ice".
The 15-year-old was competing at the Channel One Cup in Saransk, a domestic tournament organised to coincide with the world championships in France from which Russian skaters were banned due to the invasion of Ukraine.
"I am very happy to be on the ice. I am happy that the Channel One Cup has taken place," Valieva told journalists.
"Spectators give you energy when you are tired. You keep going thanks to them."
She scored 173.88 points in the free skate programme on Sunday with Olympic champion Anna Shcherbakova coming out on top on 176.12.
Valieva had won the short programme on Saturday, scoring 83.63 points but it was Shcherbakova's team which claimed the overall trophy.
Valieva's story dominated the Winter Olympics in Beijing last month.
After becoming the first woman to land a quadruple jump in Olympic competition to help Russia win the team event, it emerged that she had earlier tested positive for trimetazidine, a drug used to treat angina but which is banned for athletes because it can boost endurance.
The Court of Arbitration for Sport allowed her to continue competing at the Games, citing her young age, though without clearing her of doping.
In the individual final, Valieva fell several times and finished off the podium in fourth place.