2022 World Championships: Pairs Free Skate | Page 32 | Golden Skate

2022 World Championships: Pairs Free Skate

BlissfulSynergy

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Sep 1, 2020
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Olympics
I'm well aware of scores varying form compeition to competion, doesn't change a fact that apart from K/F no one had two clean programs. I watch Figure Skating for about 12 years, no need to tell me how comeptitions look. And the comment about my "hope is rather silly" is totally of out order. Yeah, stupid me, hoping that top 3 will have better than 60 TES points in Free, because that obviously never happens :rolleyes: Maybe you should stop treating me as a person who doesn't know anything.... And of course stupid me not knowing that scores are messy. I really needed the reminder, because obviosuly this is the first time I watch FS and I don't know anything!
You cannot predict what's going to happen in figure skating. No one expected Mishina/Galliamov to win Worlds in 2021 -- despite having great programs under new coach, Moskvina. They had been sick and hadn't performed well at Russian Nationals, so they were fortunate to make the team. Anything can happen, including many skaters not skating clean programs.

Since you are an 11-year veteran of watching figure skating, surely you realize that not everyone who skates both programs cleanly even gets on the podium. And sometimes podium medalists at both Worlds and Olympics don't skate two clean programs. You seem fixated on the numbers. It's not about the numbers alone, it's more about skaters performing the best they can and achieving personal goals.

You seem awfully worried about pairs skaters receiving better than 60 TES points in free skates. Maybe you should reflect a bit on some of the more serious things going on in the world. In particular, the Ukrainian people who are worried about life and limb and the future of their country. Ironically, Russian athletes were banned from competing at this year's Worlds, not because of their government's doping practices, but because of their leader's unwarranted aggression against an independent nation. It's not fair for those athletes, but there's no way that such aggression can be allowed to happen, without a response.

Every Russian citizen, athlete or not has to realize (just as do fans of Russian skaters) that nothing can continue 'business as usual' under these circumstances. Sports do not trump responding to an unnecessary war that is irrevocably altering the lives of so many people.
 
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cathlen

Team Gorgeous Cacti!
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May 2, 2015
Country
Poland
You cannot predict what's going to happen in figure skating. No one expected Mishina/Galliamov to win Worlds in 2021 -- despite having great programs under new coach, Moskvina, they had been sick and hadn't performed well at Russian Nationals, so they were fortunate to make the team. Anything can happen, including many skaters not skating clean programs.

Since you are an 11-year veteran of watching figure skating, surely you realize that not everyone who skates both programs cleanly even gets on the podium. And sometimes podium medalists at both Worlds and Olympics don't skate two clean programs. You seem fixated on the numbers. It's not about the numbers alone, it's more about skaters performing the best they can and achieving personal goals.

You seem awfully worried about pairs skaters receiving better than 60 TES points in free skates. Maybe you should reflect a bit on some of the more serious things going on in the world. In particular, the Ukrainian people who are worried about life and limb and the future of their country. Ironically, Russian athletes were banned from competing at this year's Worlds, not because of their government's doping practices, but because of their leader's unwarranted aggression against an independent nation.
Maybe you should stop trying to lecture me, I'm not a child and and you for some reason seem to think that you are oh so wiser than me for no reason. And I worry about scores here, because this is competition thread. I don't get where you get impression that I want Russians back, I simply expected more from teams that were competing in here, and you seem to make an awful amount of assumptions based on few comments I amde abut the level of results and not celebrating a lot K/F winning, even though I never said they were undeserving. So maybe get of your high horse, you know nothing about me and you start getting off topic, just because I don't share your exact sentiments regarding this particular competition.
 

BlissfulSynergy

Record Breaker
Joined
Sep 1, 2020
Country
Olympics
Maybe you should stop trying to lecture me, I'm not a child and and you for some reason seem to think that you are oh so wiser than me for no reason. And I worry about scores here, because this is competition thread. I don't get where you get impression that I want Russians back, I simply expected more from teams that were competing in here, and you seem to make an awful amount of assumptions based on few comments I amde abut the level of results and not celebrating a lot K/F winning, even though I never said they were undeserving. So maybe get of your high horse, you know nothing about me and you start getting off topic, just because I don't share your exact sentiments regarding this particular competition.
You are entitled to your perceptions and feelings, and whatever you want to say. If I have something to say in response, so be it. We do not have to agree. Your sense that I'm lecturing you and that I'm supposedly wiser is coming from you, not from me.

Again, why worry about how high or low the scores are. None of us have any control over how the judges score events, nor do we have any control over the scoring system. Personally, as a fan, debating individual scores and pointing out flaws in the scoring system seems more understandable than being in a hissy fit because you desire to see TES scores higher than 60. The performances are what should matter more, at least that's how I see it. Moreover, the journeys of the athletes are what matter more to me. Chinese fed decided not to send their skaters, and the usual top-scoring Russian athletes were banned from competing because of issues larger than figure skating, thus the best of the rest competed.

If the less higher scoring bothers you so much, why not take a breather on the sport? Your complaining about there not being TES scores over 60 in the pairs event at 2022 Worlds is not going to change anything. Nor do your scoring preferences and desires diminish the talent and competitiveness of the athletes who were able to compete.
 

mskater93

Record Breaker
Joined
Oct 22, 2005
You are entitled to your perceptions and feelings, and whatever you want to say. If I have something to say in response, so be it. We do not have to agree. Your sense that I'm lecturing you and that I'm supposedly wiser is coming from you, not from me.

Again, why worry about how high or low the scores. None of us have any control over how the judges score events, nor do we have any control over the scoring system. Personally, as a fan, debating individual scores and pointing out flaws in the scoring system seems more understandable than being in a hissy fit because you desire to see TES scores higher than 60. The performances are what should matter more, at least that's how I see it. Moreover, the journeys of the athletes are what matter more to me. Chinese fed decided not to send their skaters, and the usual top-scoring Russian athletes were banned from competing because of issues larger than figure skating, thus the best of the rest competed.

If the less higher scoring bothers you so much, why not take a breather on the sport? Your complaining about there not being TES scores over 60 in the pairs event at 2022 Worlds is not going to change anything. Nor do your scoring preferences and desires diminish the talent and competitiveness of the athletes who were able to compete.
I believe the person you are arguing with is saying that they wish that other than K/F that it was a better SKATED event. I can get behind that
 

CoyoteChris

Record Breaker
Joined
Dec 4, 2004
I believe the person you are arguing with is saying that they wish that other than K/F that it was a better SKATED event. I can get behind that
I am with mskater93. Unless your country has a Ministry of Sports funding and encouraging figure skater's needs, ah la the Old East German Sports Machine, pairs skating is a dangerous, expensive sport that WE may love but clearly around the world interest in it in the young people is low, And much of that can be said for all of Figure skating, and many other sports as well. At one time, Figure skating was bigger than basketball in the US. Now its not....even ice dancers like Jennifer Wester had to go off shore to find a partner, who of course she did well with and married Daniil Baranzev (sorry about my spelling) .
 

BlissfulSynergy

Record Breaker
Joined
Sep 1, 2020
Country
Olympics
If Miura/Kihara got this successful, there must be other promising pair skaters in Japan among the taller boys and short women with potential waiting to be tapped into.
I'm quite sure that Japan is trying hard to develop their pairs division, and the success of M/K has provided a key spark. But just because M/K came together and magic happened, doesn't mean other young Japanese teams are going to be as magically suited to each other and able to rise together as quickly as M/K have.

A key team somewhat overlooked is Takahashi/Tran who represent the beginning of the huge overall lift Canada has given to Japanese pairs development. It was Bruno Marcotte who suggested the pairing of Mervin Tran and Narumi Takahashi in 2007. With Julie Marcotte's excellent choreographic assistance, Takahashi/Tran rose to win an unexpected bronze medal at 2012 Worlds. We'll never know what more they may have been able to accomplish since Japan refused to bend on their citizenship rules. Apparently, Japanese fed felt they could pair Takahashi with a talented Japanese male singles skater and they would automatically achieve the same results as Tran had with Takahashi. Japan fed and sadly Takahashi were in for a rude awakening. There was something special about Mervin & Narumi which they had developed over five years. Mervin had also made sacrifices in committing to representing Japan, which were very quickly trashed when the split happened sometime after their 2012 success at Worlds. As well, in April 2012, Narumi dislocated her shoulder and had to undergo surgery. Narumi had a solid bond of trust and experience with Mervin which doesn't easily translate to clicking with a different male skater, new to pairs. Mervin was an exceptional pairs guy.

Ryuichi Kihara switched from singles and became Narumi's new pairs partner in 2013. While they seemed to look fairly good together, it takes a lot of time to get used to a new partner after achieving hard won success with a different partner and then having to suddenly part. Narumi never seemed to get her heart and her spark fully aligned with the changes she went through after the split with Mervin. Narumi and Kihara split in 2015, and Narumi tried pairs with two additional partners, with no notable success. Kihara was new to pairs, but he grew over time. He didn't hit pay dirt with a partner though, until pairing with his third partner, Riku Miura, in 2019. Similarly, Miura did not spark with her first pairs partner. So when Miura/Kihara first came together, there wasn't necessarily any automatic expectation of burgeoning success. Magical pairs partnerships tend to randomly happen; they don't grow on trees.

Frankly, fielding talented pairs teams is touch and go in every country, unless you have a traditionally well-established and long-time development system, such as Russia has. But even the U.S. and Canada, with the next best current depth and tradition in pairs, tend to experience cycles of boom and bust that fluctuate. The U.S. has largely focused on singles development, with pairs as an afterthought, until recent years. The amazing teams that the U.S. has had over the years, particularly during the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, came together randomly and independently, not as a result of any visionary development initiatives by U.S. fed. More attention has been paid to U.S. pairs development in recent years.

During the period when China had a flourishing pairs division and when the German team of Savchenko/ Szolkowy came on the scene and began to dominate, along with the very competitive Canadian team of Duhamel/Radford, even Russia began to lag a bit at the very top. This coincided with a time when Russia began to focus more on singles skaters, and they tapered off in ice dance depth but were still producing competitive pairs teams (although those teams were not consistently dominating at the very top). Recently, Russian pairs teams have begun to flourish once again at the top, while Canada has been having a ton of trouble with depth in pairs.

Since the mid-to-late 2000s, the U.S. has fielded talented pairs teams, but not until the partnerships of the Knierims and Denney/Frazier did U.S. prospects begin to shine brighter than ever. Then those teams experienced huge setbacks due to illness and injury, but new U.S. teams were formed and suddenly there began to develop a lot of exciting depth of talent in U.S. pairs. Yet, U.S. pairs teams continued to be looked down upon, picked apart, and made the butt of jokes. They were barely respected and generally always targeted with the erroneous perception that none of them could jump, when sbs jumps are in fact the hardest element for most teams to master. I am one of the pairs fans on forums who have been pushing back for years against the unfair, misguided negative perception of U.S. pairs.
 

BlissfulSynergy

Record Breaker
Joined
Sep 1, 2020
Country
Olympics
I believe the person you are arguing with is saying that they wish that other than K/F that it was a better SKATED event. I can get behind that
Thanks for interceding on the other poster's behalf. My comments stand as is. We all have differing perceptions, often based on how moved we are in general by certain skaters. Figure skating is one of the more emotionally-involved sports. We should all sometimes take a step back and reflect on our spur-of-the-moment comments. I don't have any trouble correcting misguided, spur-of-the-moment statements that I make. What I take exception to in this thread is the constant, negative bellyaching that dismissively targets U.S. skaters who were prepared to skate their best when the opportunity arose for them to claim a World championship. Anytime I see posters trying to dump on the 2022 World championships, I will have something to say about it.

The main point is: Every competition is different and occurs under circumstances that can be challenging and unusual. The champions who rise to the top are generally the ones who are able to skate their best no matter what else is happening around them. We easily forget the varying situations that occurred at annual World championships over the years, especially during transitional Olympic years!

The poster said she wanted to see top teams with TES scores above 60. Well, the top five teams at 2022 Worlds had TES scores above 60. Please stop disrespecting the pairs skaters who skated at this event. Everyone who is truly a pairs skating fan, surely saw something to appreciate about each and every team who competed. In every competition, the early teams are not as skilled. The field was not as plentiful in Montpelier for more than one reason. In general, the sport doesn't pay a lot of attention and respect to pairs, which hampers competitive development. Due to the antiquated rules, many talented skaters in the U.S., Canada, and perhaps a few other countries, have to sit at home and twiddle their thumbs. You can't improve if you can't compete. The competition structure does not adequately support furthering the steady development of promising pairs teams. So get it straight please, that the problematic issues involved in the sport of figure skating, and specifically in pairs skating, go far beyond the overdone, conceited, and negative perception that only the Russian pairs teams and only the Russian ladies are worth watching. And that somehow the rest of the pairs teams eligible to compete at this World championships are unworthy and less talented.

Anyone who thinks like that is missing the boat completely. Everyone should examine what they are saying and try to be honest about what kinds of emotions their comments are arising out of. I have enormous respect for the journey this season of Eric Radford & Vanessa James. Meanwhile, I see a lot half-baked, dismissive, and even snide, snobby comments about J/R on skating forums (and it's probably worse on Twitter). If you are a true pairs fan, how can you NOT appreciate what Eric & Vanessa went through this season and what they managed to overcome. Even Ted Barton's comments were superficial, perfunctory and superfluous about this Canadian team. Look at the amazing, revealing comments by James/Radford and Knierim/Frazier during the fp press conference. Anyone who doesn't understand what they expressed so beautifully and the support and respect they showed each other, is entirely missing the boat. There's a post-sp interview with Vanessa and Eric too posted on YouTube by the ISU channel which is very touching and heart-wrenching. I admire Vanessa and Eric so much! Just like Alexa/Brandon, like Meno/Sand, like Tai/Randy, Vanessa and Eric are talented, passionate skaters, caring friends and mentors to others, and good people.

Figure skating is a tough sport, and pairs is the toughest and most dangerous discipline. When I watch the early teams, I gain a deeper understanding of just how difficult these elements are to accomplish, and how easy the top teams make it look. When I look at adult skaters, I appreciate how hard and long it takes just to achieve basic single jumps and rudimentary spins. With that understanding in mind, I more appreciate the early teams at competitions who are still developing their skills, and I realize that even if what they are doing doesn't always look as easy and complete and polished as the skills of later teams, it is still very hard and very amazing to be able to get to even that level of ability.

Once again, this 2022 Worlds is an opportunity for the sport to reset, and to start solving some of its deeper problems. As fans, we should all try to refrain from being so one-note about only the Russians are worth watching. Or that the scores determine how well-skated an event was. If that's the case, then all that's needed is to look at the scoring results and the protocols. You miss a lot if you are going to look at the event with your eyes sideways and your nose out of joint because you think the numbers determine how well-skated the event was. That's completely untrue. I agree with those who single out Hase/Seegert's wonderful performances and their redemption after Seegert's injury at the Olympics. I get enjoyment from watching the Kovalevs, because they clearly love skating together. Kudos to the Austrian team and to the British team, with this being the final competition for both, which is another indication of the passing of an era. Every competition there is something to get excited about on the personal level of what it means for particular skaters. The sport has so many unwieldy problems. It's the skaters who make me happy.
 

moonvine

All Hail Queen Gracie
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Joined
Mar 14, 2007
Country
United-States
To each their own. Some will say she is hard worker, some say she put her goals over her marriage and relationship, bu whatever she earned a gold medal with the current conditions. Good for her. They skated well after a hard situatio. The program and celements were solid. No the were not like Sui and Han or the Russians but they weren' t here. I don't think I would expect to win again though if the Russians and Chinese come back.
She is, objectively, a hard worker. Sometimes she posts her workouts to IG and that is one insanely strong tiny woman.

I guess people could say she put her goals over her marriage and relationship. I do not think that would be correct. Chris did not want to skate anymore. She did. It worked out for all of them (including Brandon). It’s quite evident Chris is a great deal happier and she has stated their relationship is much better.

I don’t care who else was or wasn’t there. They skated better than they ever have. Their rise has been meteoric. They broke their PB set at the Olympics just a month ago. I’m pretty sure they are the most decorated pair in US history (World Championship Gold and Olympic Silver). Trying to shove them off into retirement makes zero sense. USFS should do anything possible to keep them around.
 

surimi

Body positivity goes BOTH ways.
Record Breaker
Joined
Nov 12, 2013
I'm quite sure that Japan is trying hard to develop their pairs division, and the success of M/K has provided a key spark. But just because M/K came together and magic happened, doesn't mean other young Japanese teams are going to be as magically suited to each other and able to rise together as quickly as M/K have.

I am aware, as is anyone who follows pairs in general.
 

BlissfulSynergy

Record Breaker
Joined
Sep 1, 2020
Country
Olympics
Some will say she is hard worker, some say she put her goals over her marriage and relationship, bu whatever she earned a gold medal with the current conditions.
Where are you getting this statement from? Are you kidding? Who are these 'some' you are referring to? Whoever 'some' are, they are completely off-base. I'm not even sure what is meant by 'she put her goals over her marriage and relationship.' Do you know anything at all about Chris & Alexa Knierim? Have you met them personally? I follow the Knierims on Instagram, I've followed their career, and I've followed Brandon's career with Haven Denney before he partnered with Alexa. And I've read relevant articles, interviews, and listened to post-event press conferences. Do you realize that Chris Knierim helps coach his wife, Alexa, and her pairs partner, Brandon? Do you realize that Chris and Brandon are close friends dating all the way back to when they were junior pairs guys in Colorado? Did you listen to what Alexa and Brandon had to say during the 2022 pairs press conferences at Worlds in Montpelier? If you haven't, you should. You might learn a few things.

Chris and Alexa Knierim have been through a lot together, and that's an understatement. Alexa almost died from the strange illness she suffered circa 2016. Chris lost his father and an uncle I believe sometime around 2017. The Knierims both committed to continuing their career after the 2018 Olympics. They took some risks with changing coaches that didn't completely pan out, until they fortuitously made the switch to Meno/Sand in Irvine, CA. The rest is history.

Of course, Chris decided during 2020 4CCs, that he didn't want to compete anymore, but he fully supported and encouraged Alexa's desire to continue. Chris has played an important supportive role in Alexa & Brandon's partnership, as husband, friend, coach, and mentor.
 

YagsFan

On the Ice
Joined
Feb 25, 2010
Of all the disciplines, pairs was the easiest for the Americans to win b/c the pairs championships is pretty much similar to Four Continents without the Russians. I guess the only way Americans will win pairs is if the Russians never come back. The Americans are probably hoping the Russians will never come back because that way it will be an easy free ride to the top due to no competition from the remaining countries. That makes the gold medal less worthy because the best competitors are absent. Now if the Russians and Chinese were there and the Americans win the gold, then that's something to be proud of. I'm missing the Russians and Chinese pairs. The Americans are lacking finesse, personality, and power which makes them not interesting or exciting to watch. This pairs competition was not as exciting as the Beijing Olympics, probably the most dull and boring pairs competition ever. It's a shame that Alexa and Brendan's performance is a gold medal one. Sigh....
OK, I guess you stipulate that you hate American pairs skating, and possibly all things American? I will begin by saying that I am a huge fan of Russian skating, especially pairs (my all time favs are G&G, and I was firmly in camp B&S back in Salt Lake City), but: you say our pairs lack personality and power, and they're just not exciting? I challenge you to find more personality than Alexa anywhere, and as for power and excitement, this free skate was positively oozing them! When I think of power pairs skating, the only other ones who come to mind are Sui & Hann (definitely the masters in that department), and, actually, Ashley and Tim. The Russians can be, and often are, beautiful and precise, but I wouldn't say more powerful. So sorry you were bored this year; many were quite excited.
 

mskater93

Record Breaker
Joined
Oct 22, 2005
I'm quite sure that Japan is trying hard to develop their pairs division, and the success of M/K has provided a key spark. But just because M/K came together and magic happened, doesn't mean other young Japanese teams are going to be as magically suited to each other and able to rise together as quickly as M/K have.

A key team somewhat overlooked is Takahashi/Tran who represent the beginning of the huge overall lift Canada has given to Japanese pairs development. It was Bruno Marcotte who suggested the pairing of Mervin Tran and Narumi Takahashi in 2007. With Julie Marcotte's excellent choreographic assistance, Takahashi/Tran rose to win an unexpected bronze medal at 2012 Worlds. We'll never know what more they may have been able to accomplish since Japan refused to bend on their citizenship rules. Apparently, Japanese fed felt they could pair Takahashi with a talented Japanese male singles skater and they would automatically achieve the same results as Tran had with Takahashi. Japan fed and sadly Takahashi were in for a rude awakening. There was something special about Mervin & Narumi which they had developed over five years. Mervin had also made sacrifices in committing to representing Japan, which were very quickly trashed when the split happened sometime after their 2012 success at Worlds. As well, in April 2012, Narumi dislocated her shoulder and had to undergo surgery. Narumi had a solid bond of trust and experience with Mervin which doesn't easily translate to clicking with a different male skater, new to pairs. Mervin was an exceptional pairs guy.

Ryuichi Kihara switched from singles and became Narumi's new pairs partner in 2013. While they seemed to look fairly good together, it takes a lot of time to get used to a new partner after achieving hard won success with a different partner and then having to suddenly part. Narumi never seemed to get her heart and her spark fully aligned with the changes she went through after the split with Mervin. Narumi and Kihara split in 2015, and Narumi tried pairs with two additional partners, with no notable success. Kihara was new to pairs, but he grew over time. He didn't hit pay dirt with a partner though, until pairing with his third partner, Riku Miura, in 2019. Similarly, Miura did not spark with her first pairs partner. So when Miura/Kihara first came together, there wasn't necessarily any automatic expectation of burgeoning success. Magical pairs partnerships tend to randomly happen; they don't grow on trees.

Frankly, fielding talented pairs teams is touch and go in every country, unless you have a traditionally well-established and long-time development system, such as Russia has. But even the U.S. and Canada, with the next best current depth and tradition in pairs, tend to experience cycles of boom and bust that fluctuate. The U.S. has largely focused on singles development, with pairs as an afterthought, until recent years. The amazing teams that the U.S. has had over the years, particularly during the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, came together randomly and independently, not as a result of any visionary development initiatives by U.S. fed. More attention has been paid to U.S. pairs development in recent years.

During the period when China had a flourishing pairs division and when the German team of Savchenko/ Szolkowy came on the scene and began to dominate, along with the very competitive Canadian team of Duhamel/Radford, even Russia began to lag a bit at the very top. This coincided with a time when Russia began to focus more on singles skaters, and they tapered off in ice dance depth but were still producing competitive pairs teams (although those teams were not consistently dominating at the very top). Recently, Russian pairs teams have begun to flourish once again at the top, while Canada has been having a ton of trouble with depth in pairs.

Since the mid-to-late 2000s, the U.S. has fielded talented pairs teams, but not until the partnerships of the Knierims and Denney/Frazier did U.S. prospects begin to shine brighter than ever. Then those teams experienced huge setbacks due to illness and injury, but new U.S. teams were formed and suddenly there began to develop a lot of exciting depth of talent in U.S. pairs. Yet, U.S. pairs teams continued to be looked down upon, picked apart, and made the butt of jokes. They were barely respected and generally always targeted with the erroneous perception that none of them could jump, when sbs jumps are in fact the hardest element for most teams to master. I am one of the pairs fans on forums who have been pushing back for years against the unfair, misguided negative perception of U.S. pairs.
Look, I am trying to get you and the other poster to understand one another's point of view. I would have really loved it if CG/L wouldn't have had such a strange skate and freak incident happen, quite frankly. I always wish for all skaters and teams to skate their best at every event, although I do have rooting interests and favorites like everyone else.

And I AM one of those adult skaters (waaaaay to tall to do pairs) who works their @ss off for every new element and skill they learn.
 

CoyoteChris

Record Breaker
Joined
Dec 4, 2004
Look, I am trying to get you and the other poster to understand one another's point of view. I would have really loved it if CG/L wouldn't have had such a strange skate and freak incident happen, quite frankly. I always wish for all skaters and teams to skate their best at every event, although I do have rooting interests and favorites like everyone else.

And I AM one of those adult skaters (waaaaay to tall to do pairs) who works their @ss off for every new element and skill they learn.
I have an adult skater friend in Vegas and I watch how hard she works every day on Instagram and how she improves....I am impressed that anyone can learn the elements.
 
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