Original article link: http://www.sovsport.ru/gazeta/article-item/551736
English translated by Alyona
Only a month has passed after the Olympic Games, but the one and only two-time Olympic champion in RG individual program has been married off two times.
One of the first questions to Evgenia was – How did it happen? She was ready for it. And she was absolutely not ready for the proposal we made at the end of her visit… But it turned out that we had unwittingly guessed her childhood dream. But let’s go on step by step.
“I PEEPED INTO THE CASINO BUT HAD NO COURAGE TO GAMBLE”
Reporter – Zhenya, in London after the victory you said that you felt as if a great weight was off your mind. Now you have lived a month without this “weight”. How does it feel?
EK- Sense of accomplishment… And jubilation from people around me. I am happy that I’ve accomplished the task. It feels good, to be exact (laughs).
Reporter- You have been out for a month – Sardinia, Omsk…
EK- Omsk – Moscow – Sardinia. On Sardinia I spent only four days. It was awesome! Irina Viner made a great vacation for us. Then one of my relatives had a birthday and I had to return to Omsk.
Reporter- What did you do on Sardinia?
EK- We relaxed, swam and danced.
Reporter- In night clubs?
EK- In night clubs as well.
Reporter- People say you visited casino.
EK- Well, we just peeped in… I am not fond of gambling.
Reporter- So was it a pure interest?
EK- It was interesting to see.
Reporter- Now they say you are going to Paris for commercial shooting. Have you been to Paris on holidays?
EK- Once I have spent four days in Paris with my mom.
Reporter- What do you like most in Paris?
EK- The atmosphere, the people… It is a romantic city. The atmosphere there differs from the one in Moscow or other cities. Paris is one of two cities I like most. The other one is Florence.
“RINGS ARE GIVEN TO ME AS PRESENTS, THAT IS TRUE”
Phone call- Evgenia, hello! This is Vladimir from Yarslavl. I congratulate you with a perfect result on the Olympics. I have two daughters who are fond of gymnastics. They are going to an ordinary club. Can a girl from an ordinary club become an Olympic champion?
EK- Of course, it can happen! A lot depends on the child’s will and talent. Desire and hard work do a lot.
Phone call- I have twins. One resembles you. She is hardworking and successful. I want her to continue in the ordinary club not to send her away from home.
EK- I hope she will be noticed one day and invited to the national team.
Phone call- Thank you!
Reporters catch a break between the phone calls and hit an “insidious” blow.
Repoter- Zhenya, according to the internet after the Olympic Games you have married two times. How did it happen!?
EK- I don’t know myself! Where did this information come from? I was looking through the internet in the mornings and was learning… who I had married to. In fact I have never spoken on my private life. And I never will. Private must remain private. One shouldn’t tell the whole world about it.
Reporter- Are you acquainted with any of the “fiancées”?
EK- I am acquainted with… both.
Reporter- At first people said it was swimmer Lobintsev. Then hockey player Musatov. The whole hockey world says it’s true about the latter one.
EK- I am not going to comment on it.
Reporter- There is “evidence” in the internet. A photo of the ring given to you at engagement.
EK- Rings are given to me as presents.
Reporter- This photo was uploaded to your page in “VKONTAKTE”. In winter you said that all the pages in social networks were fake.
EK-I still have no pages in social networks. I only appear on Twitter. I do it very seldom – only to respond to the words of congratulation from my supporters. That’s why the whole story with the ring… surprised me a lot.
Reporter- But the hand and the ring belong to you?
EK- The hand is mine. But the photo is not mine. I haven’t uploaded it.
Reporter- Does it mean that when you get marry, internet will be the last source to learn it?
EK- When I get marry you will have a chance to congratulate me (with a cagily smile).
Reporter- The situation around famous gymnast and TV moderator Laysan Utyasheva is much spoken about. She was sued for a multi-million debt…
EK- No comments here, because I don’t know anything exact. I was shortly told about the situation. I hope this girl will be ok. On my behalf I can’t say anything bad about her.
“ONE SHOULD RETIRE IN RIGHT TIME AND DO IT NICELY”
Phone call- Hello, my name is Boris, I am from Chelyabinsk. You used to say that you didn’t know what you would do in future. So maybe after the Olympics you have clarified yourself?
EK- I haven’t retired yet. I am taking some rest now. So at the moment I can’t say you anything exact.
Phone call- Let’s continue this topic. Is it important for you to retire unbeatable like Irina Rodnina or you support the philosophy of Evgeniy Plyushenko who believes that Olympic Champions should remain as decoration?
EK- I think there should be proper time to retire. And one should do it nicely. Sometimes it happens that a person hopes to achieve better results but has no possibilities. It’s difficult to judge. That’s why every sportsman should decide it himself whether to retire or to go on.
Phone call- But you would prefer to leave unbeatable, wouldn’t you?
EK- It’s better to retire at the peak of your career.
Phone call- So your inner voice should tell you: Zhenya, stop!
Phone call- Coach’s word would play the second role?
EK- I would listen to my coach. But it is me who is going to perform and go through it all.
Phone call- During the last 12 years we have witnessed the retirement of the great sportsmen – Karelin with Silver in Sydney, Khorkina with Silver in Athens.
EK- You say as if it were a failure! It is Silver medal at the Olympics!
Phone call- No, I would like to speak about the way those great sportsmen retired. Alexandr Popov – after a failure heat. Alexey Nemov – also Athens and the ill-fated bar and scandalous judging… I doubt they expected that their retirement should be like that.
EK- It is very hard to remain on the high level for such a long time. In gymnastics only Alina Kabaeva and Irina Tchashina managed to stay so long. Usually the career lasts for one Olympic cycle. Two cycles is something very unreal. In group competition Natalia Lavrova and Alyona Posevina had won two medals. I can’t tell you about other kinds of sport. Each one has its own specifics.
Phone call- But you have already entered the history. A two-time Olympic champion will not appear in the nearest future. When people ask you about Rio, you say: Give me some rest! How much time do you need to tell us finally: I am ready for Rio, for the third Olympic medal?
EK-I cannot predict everything. There were situations when Alina Kabaeva had retired and then decided to come back to gymnastics. Everyone was sure she would go to Beijing, but suddenly she decided to stop. It was her decision. It is pointless to suppose what will happen in a year or two years… I was not sure that I would take part in London Olympics six months before the start. There are many gymnasts in Russia…
BEHIND THE SCENES. “I PARTICIPATED IN THE DESTRUCTION OF THE SCALES!”
The girls from the Russian group during their visit to “Sovetsky Sport” told us a surprising story: after the victory they had had dinner for… six times. And in the next morning they had destroyed the hated scales right at the hotel entrance.
It turned out that Evgenia Kanaeva participated in those great and crazy actions of the gymnasts as well. The responses of the audience were amazing: “This is it! This is how the medals are won!”
EK- Yes, I have participated in the “crime over the scales”! By the way, we have been already given new scales, even more precise. In London there was a lady responsible for the weight control. After the weighting she would notice it in the table: green color for the lower weight, red color for the higher weight and no color for the same weight. So the weighting process would cause trembling.
Reporter- So you waited till the scales’ guard lost vigilance and stole the scales?
EK- No. she gave it to us by her own will! And about the food… Right after we were free to go we have settled in the canteen of the Olympic village. At first we couldn’t eat much, the stomachs got much smaller and the food simply wouldn’t go in. So we had to walk for a while and then continued to eat. I confess that I ran away from the closing ceremony. It was pretty boring and… we wanted to eat so badly! Just imagine, all I could afford myself on my day off during the whole preparation period was half glass of green tea without sugar!
LANDSCAPE IN 10 MINUTES
Our offer which puzzled and at the same time inspired Zhenya sounded like this: “People often call gymnasts “artists” (in Russian RG sounds like Artistic Gymnastics). We know what a great gymnast you are and now we would like to see what kind of artist you are.”
Zhenya took the brushes vigorously. Firstly she demanded: Why did you leave just one brush to me, please bring some more! We mixed her up with our comments, but it was so unusual to her painting. Her assurance evoked admiration. We offered her to paint whatever she liked.
Reporter- What is your favorite color, Zhenya?
EK- White! But it wouldn’t look nice on the white paper. (Her brush touches light blue and violet)
Reporter- When did you visit the Tretyakov’s gallery for the last time?
EK- Unfortunately I haven’t been there. I have been to Louvre.
Reporter- You probably stood in the line for more than an hour…
EK- No, it didn’t take long. I had to stay for more than an hour in Rome to get to the Vatican.
Reporter- If ever you have a chance to come to the Louvre again, which painting would you like to see?
EK- Madonna and Child (Virgin and Child) of Botticelli.
Reporter- So you are going to paint a landscape?
EK- I adore Russian nature, its vastness.
Reporter- The landscape is going to be a bit lonely.
EK- Yes, just one tree. Maybe I should add here a little house and a horse? No, I better won’t. Let there be scape. But I love horses. By the way, how did you know I love to paint? My childhood dream was to become an artist.
Reporter- At what age did you dream of that?
EK- It was approximately at the same age I realized there was no Santa Claus. Six or seven.
Reporter- How did you realize there was no one?
EK- My mom asked which presents we wanted to get at the New Year. I named “Anastasia” and my brother named “Aladdin”, the cartoons. That evening we got our presents. I thought that something was wrong, Santa Claus couldn’t overhear our conversation…
The painting you see on the photo was done in 10 minutes. One of my colleagues said: “Unbelievable! I wouldn’t finish it in one year!” Now everyone can see what an artist Evgenia Kanaeva is!