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Russian skier stable but serious
By Stuart Williams
06:03 AEST Sun Feb 16 2014

Russian freestyle skier Maria Komissarova, who fractured her spine on Saturday in training for the Olympic skicross, is in a stable but grave condition following a six-and-a-half hour operation, her federation said.

Komissarova, 23, was immediately evacuated from the site of the accident at the Rosa Khutor Extreme Park, where she had training for the high-speed and risky event, and taken to hospital in the nearby resort of Krasnaya Polyana.

The operation was described as a success and she had a metal implant inserted into her spine. But the federation declined to give any prognosis.

"The doctors took the decision to operate. The preliminary diagnosis was a fracture of the 12th thoracic vertebra, with a dislocation. The diagnosis was confirmed during the operation," the freestyle federation said in a statement.

"The operation lasted six and a half hours. The doctors did everything they could. The destroyed part of the vertebra was restored and a metallic implant put in."

"Her condition is stable-serious, she is conscious.

"But it seems that in two weeks she will need a second operation."

Komissarova was not expected to be a frontline medal contender after sustaining a knee injury ahead of the games.

The head of the Russian freestyle team, Elena Vorona, said that the section of track she had fallen on was not the hardest part of the course.

"It seems she was preparing for the more difficult part, and relaxed a little and was injured," she told the website of Sport Express.

Crashes have been a common feature of the snowboard and freestyle skiing events at these Games.

Norwegian snowboarder Torstein Horgmo broke his collar bone in a crash during men's snowboard slopestyle training before the Games began.

Canadian slopestyle skier Yuki Tsubota fractured her jaw in competition when she landed short on a jump and hit the rim of the slope, bringing her knee thumping up into her jaw.

In moguls, American skier Heidi Klose broke a bone in her thigh and tore her cruciate knee ligament after a crash in training.

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