Wiberg Pulls Out of Women's Combined


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Snowbasin, Utah Feb. 13, 2002 (AP)–Former World Cup overall champion Pernilla Wiberg withdrew from the women’s combined on Wednesday because of a sore knee.

Wiberg, a strong all-arounder who has always done well in the combined, hurt her left knee during Tuesday’s downhill, where she finished 14th.

The Swede, who has a long history of knee problems, said she preferred to stay off her leg and save herself for Sunday’s super giant slalom. The combined is Thursday.

“She’s not competing in the combined,” said Bjorn Folin, press director for the Swedish Olympic Committee. “Her left knee got all swollen during the downhill. There were a lot of long, high jumps and her knee took a lot of shocks.

“She could probably have competed in the combined and been OK, but she said she felt her best medal chances were in the Super G and did not want to ruin that chance.”

The Swede said this will likely be her last season.

“This will be my fourth Olympics and it would be good to finish with a medal,” the 31-year-old said.

Wiberg already has a formidable medal collection–a gold in the giant slalom at the 1992 Olympics, a gold in the combined in 1994 and a silver in the downhill in 1998.

Copyright © 2000 The Associated Press