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Plushenko frozen out after secret skate dates

Vancouver Olympics silver medallist Evgeny Plushenko has been banned indefinitely by the International Skating Union (ISU) as he competed without permission in exhibitions earlier this year, it said yesterday.

The Russian showman, who won Olympic gold at the 2006 Turin Games and also silver four years earlier in Salt Lake City, pulled out of the world championships in Italy in March citing an injury.

But he went on to perform at figure skating exhibitions in March and April, the ISU said, without asking for permission.

The ISU announced that Plushenko had not filed an appeal to their initial decision to ban him in June and so his ban was now upheld.

"The ineligibility is ongoing with no specific term," an ISU official said.


"Requests for reinstatements may be made in line with ISU regulations ... and are subject to a review and decision by the ISU Council."

Plushenko, who had 21 days to lodge an appeal, has said he wants to compete at the Sochi 2014 Olympics in Russia, saying he had overcome his Vancouver disappointment.

"I've already written it (Sochi) in my plans. As for Vancouver it's in the past, and I want to look to the future," he had said earlier this year.

The 2006 Olympic champion stirred up controversy at the Vancouver games after being edged out by American Evan Lysacek for the title.

Plushenko heavily criticised the judges for marking him down in the short programme, when he was the only skater to land a quadruple jump cleanly, and on Monday he reiterated his belief that Lysacek was not the "real" Olympic champion.