Sami Kennedy-Sim of Australia reacts after finishing third in the semi-final.
Sami Kennedy-Sim of Australia reacts after finishing third in the semi-final. DAN HIMBRECHTS

Aussie skier's hopes come unstuck in start gate

AUSTRALIAN skier Sami Kennedy-Sim has missed out on a spot in the ski cross big final after missing the start in the opening semi-final.

Kennedy-Sim's start was her strength in the quarter-final but it was her downfall in the semi on Friday. She struggled to get over the first section and by the time she was rolling the other three competitors had streaked away.

"My pole strap broke and my thumb got stuck in the start gate,” Kennedy-Sim said.

Sami Kennedy-Sim (right) leads the way in the ski cross quarter-final.
Sami Kennedy-Sim (right) leads the way in the ski cross quarter-final. FAZRY ISMAIL

"And that is a perfect demonstration of why skiers squat, why we're really, really strong.

"We spend a lot of time in the gym to make it up that steep Wu-Tang face and continue on.”

A fall from Sweden's Lisa Andersson briefly gave Kennedy-Sim hopes of a Steven Bradbury-style miracle but there was just too much ground to make up.

Sami Kennedy-Sim finished fourth in the small final.
Sami Kennedy-Sim finished fourth in the small final. DAN HIMBRECHTS

"About 25 seconds in I thought I would catch them, had a couple of mistakes and narrowly missed the Swede when she fell over,” Kennedy-Sim said.

Still, Kennedy-Sim will return home happy after having turned in a vastly better performance than at the Sochi Games four years ago where she went out in the first heat.

She ended up eighth after finishing fourth in the small final.

Kailani Craine performs during the women's free figure skating final.
Kailani Craine performs during the women's free figure skating final. Bernat Armangue

Kennedy-Sim's teammate Kailani Craine produced a season-best score in the women's figure skating free program.

The 19-year-old scored 111.84 points for a total of 168.61 in the free program scored.

In a mistake-free performance in her Olympic debut, Craine earned 57.89 for technical elements and 53.95 for her presentation, with no points deducted.


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