Sat, Nov 25, 2006 - Page 18 News List

Joubert, Weir and Dobrin set for figure skating showdown

AP , MOSCOW

Brian Joubert, Johnny Weir and Sergei Dobrin head the men's field at the Cup of Russia Grand Prix figure skating competition that began yesterday.

A win in Moscow for Joubert would clinch a place for the Frenchman in the Grand Prix Final to be held next month in St Petersburg, Russia.

Dobrin, aiming to solidify position as Russia's top male skater in this season's absence of Evgeny Plushenko, also could earn a berth in St Petersburg with a strong performance. He has accumulated 11 points in this year's Grand Prix series, putting him even with Weir and Canada's Emanuel Sandhu, who also will compete in the Luzhniki Arena.

Julia Sebestyen of Hungary, who won the Grand Prix event in China two weeks ago, heads the women's lineup and is a strong contender for a slot in the final. Russia's Elena Sokolova has a mathematical chance of making the final if she wins in Moscow; she placed only seventh at the Cup of China, giving her four points.

Sarah Meier of Switzerland and Alissa Czisny of the US, both ahead of Sokolova in Grand Prix points, will also be competing in Moscow.

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