January 11 - Evgeniya Kanaeva, the most decorated rhythmic gymnast in the history of the discipline, has announced her retirement from competitive competition after she was named as vice-president of the Russian Rhythmic Gymnastics Federation.
The 22-year-old Russian, who is the only rhythmic gymnast to win two individual Olympic all-around titles – at Beijing 2008 and London 2012 - was elected to her position within Russian Gymnastics at the organisation's conference in Novogorsk.
Her outstanding career has seen her claim a total of 17 world titles, including the prestigious all-around gold medals three times consecutively between 2009 and 2011, as well as earning 13 gold medals at the European Championships – she won all five possible gold medals at the 2009 European Championships in Baku.
She set the record for taking the highest number of gold medals won in a single Rhythmic Gymnastics World Championships when she took all six titles at Mie in 2009, going on to repeat her unparalleled performance two years later at the 31st World Championships in Montpellier.
Kanaeva started her Olympic career as the youngest finalist in the sport at Beijing 2008, clinching a 75.5 score and becoming the gold medal winning champion by an impressive 3.5 margin.
Four years later, her unsurpassed talent saw her claim her second Olympic all-around title at the 2012 London Games at the age of twenty-two - making her the oldest rhythmic gymnast to win Olympic gold.
"I could've stayed and keep working hard, but I want to learn something else besides the training process," Kanaeva is quoted as saying to FCP-Press.
"I don't rule out the possibility of me turning to coaching, as well as executing my responsibilities in the Federation."
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