Russia sack ski jumping coach

German Wolfgang Staiert has been sacked as coach of the Russian ski jumping team, paying the price for the team's poor showing at the Vancouver Olympics.


"I've heard the news that Staiert had resigned," president of the Russian ski jumping federation Vladimir Slavsky was quoted as saying by local media at the weekend.

"That is not true. I just fired him," Slavsky said.

"I must say he has done a lot of good since being appointed the chief coach of our team six years ago. There have been good things as well as bad, but at this stage we have a lot more minuses than pluses."

Staiert, regarded as one of the world's top and best-paid trainers in the sport, became the first of what is expected to be many coaching casualties in the Russian Olympic team following the country's dismal performance in Vancouver.

Russia, a traditional winter sports superpower, had it worst ever showing in Olympic competition, winning 15 medals but only three of them gold.

Russian ski jumpers had been regarded as medal contenders in Vancouver but their chances disappeared after team leader Dmitry Vasilyev (pictured) suffered a serious knee injury on the eve of the Games.

Without Vasilyev, they did not qualify for the team final and finished outside the top 25 in both individual events.

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