Former Olympic and world champion Yevgeny Plushenko was forced to retire from the European championships with a back injury on Thursday, just moments after he had struggled to sixth place in the short programme.
Evgeni Plushenko of Russia reacts after performing his men short program routine during the ISU European Figure Skating Championships in Zagreb on January 24, 2013. Plushenko was forced to retire from the European championships with a back injury.
The 30-year-old Russian, who won a seventh European title last year after a two-year absence, is building towards the 2014 Olympics on home ground in Sochi.
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