Tennis superstar Maria Sharapova carried the Olympic Torch into Fisht Olympic Stadium during the 2014 Sochi Games Opening Ceremony. The career Grand Slam champion, who won a Silver Medal at the 2012 London Summer Olympics, has been an active ambassador for Sochi, her childhood home. She also has been working as a special correspondent for NBC.
Masha started a relay of the torch by handing off to 2-time Gold Medalist, 3-time World Champion and current World Record holder pole-vaulter Yelena Isinbayeva, perhaps the greatest female pole-vaulter of all time. Also comprising the final relay were 3-time Olympic Gold Medalist wrestler Aleksandr Karelin (who retired with an astounding 887-2 career record) and Olympic Gold Medalist rhythmic gymnast Alina Kabaeva, who also holds 9 World Championship Gold Medals in various rhythmic gymnastic categories. But the greatest honor went to 3-time Gold Medalist ice hockey goaltender Vladislav Tretiak, considered by some to be the greatest goaltender in history, and 3-time Olympic Gold Medalist and 10-time World Championship Gold Medalist pairs figure skater Irina Rodnina. The two Russian legends of sport lit the Olympic Cauldron.
Masha had the honor of being the first female flag bearer for Russia during the 2012 London Games. Now she’s had the honor of bringing the flame into Fisht Olympic Stadium during her hometown 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics. It nearly makes the rest of her tennis season pale in comparison. But undoubtedly we’ll soon see her back on the court fighting with the same tenacity and drive that she brings to every match.
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