The Pairs took the ice last night at the Pacific Colisuem and some of the results were totally expected and others were a complete surprise.

As I thought, China’s Xue Shen and Hongbo Zhao are in the lead with a season’s best score for their performance. It was classic Shen and Zhao in that the program was lyrical and joyful and although not perfect (she was a little wild on her landing from the throw – but still clean) they were pretty close.

Now for the surprises:

Canada’s Anabelle Langlois and Cody Hay looked in competition the same way that I had seen them in practice; namely confident, strong and fluid. They delivered a season’s best performance that earned them a score that was almost 10 points more than their previous one leaving them in 7th place.

China’s Qing Pang and Jian Tong poured it on and delivered a truly memorable short program and for me was probably the 3rd best program of the night. They sit in 4th place.

Germany’s two-time and defending world champions were also spot on in a way that we haven’t really seen them all season which put them in second place.

The Russian team of Yuko Kavaguti and Alexander Smirnov are in third place and were very strong in a classical russian style. Yuko has beautiful movement with her arms which enhanced The swan choreography to perfection.

Canada’s champions started off very strongly and their program components scores and perseverance helped to offset the damage from a one point deduction resulting from a fall for Jessica on the side by side jumps. They are in 6th place.

It will all come down to the free program which happens tonight and with only 2.5 points separating the top three teams it’s will come down to the wire, literally as Shen and Zhao are the final skaters.

In seeing the field, I am still standing by my predictions:

Gold – Xue Shen and Hongbo Zhao CHN

Silver- Qing Pang and Jian Tong CHN

Bronze – Aliona Savchenko and Robin Szolkowy – GER

We’ll all know in about 12 hours.

Enjoy the skating!

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