I find it funny that some people have to say Counter 3A that Hanyu does is overrated. If it’s that easy, then why no other men do it. In fact, in ladies, Eteri’s girls now are copying Counter Axel entry and they do not have that outstanding success with it. Zagitova has been failing that entry 2 times in public. And Daria’s Counter 2A is not that huge either. It is super difficult to do a Counter 3A like Hanyu does, and his 3A is HUGE. His 3A Boston was like 5m
And another one, which got buried like 6ft deep in my inbox (sorry anon):
I think Yuzu does back counter 3A since 2011-2012 but I only heard commentators going crazy about that entry of him with PW. Do you know if there’s any reason to that? Thanks a bunch
The thing with Yuzu’s back counter triple Axel is he makes it look so effortless that, to a casual observer, it would come off as really not at all that difficult.
See? Easy peasy lemon squeezy, like there’s absolutely nothing to it, he turns, he jumps, he lands, he changes edge, he turns again, all in one seamless motion, what’s the big deal? By the way #1: did you guys notice, that one crazy exit up there was what he used to do at the end of the triple flip in Seimei - you know, the easiest jumping pass in his layout, and here he’s sticking it to a back counter triple Axel, haha. By the way #2: another anon asked me if this one 3A at ACI was higher than usual - yes I think so too, he got such amazing height on that one and he started unwrapping his body so soon that for one split second while I was watching the live stream I seriously wondered if he just did a double Axel (it was a very short-lived doubt of course, because I immediately reminded myself that I’m 100% sure he is no longer capable of doing a 2A even the Earth is about to explode and his 2A is the only thing that could save the day).
But, yes, again and again, despite that deceptive appearance, that back counter entry is one of the hardest things ever performed in this sport. I have come across a commentator somewhere comparing Yuzu’s triple Axel entry to ski jumping while holding a tray of glasses and I tell you, that was no exaggeration. The sad but true fact, though, is that not all commentators around the world are savvy enough to recognize its intricacy on the go (I swear I’ve heard one or two calling his entry a three-turn way back when). Also, pre-Sochi, it was basically inconceivable to most people that a pencil thin, relatively unknown kid in his teens could have pulled off a move that difficult with that ease.
To wrap this largely redundant post up, I’d like to present a quote from a book I recently read and loved:
Ask any ice-skater or ballet dancer or show jumper, anyone who lives by beautiful moving things: nothing takes as much work as effortlessness.
-Tana French, The Likeness-