Moscow (AFP) - Japan's two-time Olympic champion Yuzuru Hanyu overcame an injury to his right ankle to win the men's title at the Rostelecom Cup on Saturday.
The 23-year-old double world champion secured his second straight Grand Prix title this season, after winning in Helsinki, and stamped his ticket for the Grand Prix series Finals in Vancouver next month.
Hanyu went into the free programme with a 20-point lead after setting a world record in Friday's short programme, but his preparations were cut short when he fell during an official practice session.
He left the rink with ice packed around his right ankle. Last year an injury to the same ankle caused him to miss the Grand Prix Final.
However, Hanyu returned to the rink for the competition, making a number of errors during his "Art on Ice" by Edvin Marton free routine.
The Sochi and Pyeongchang Olympic champion did enough to collect 167.89 points, to give him 278.42 overall.
His fans strewed the ice of Megasport arena with dozens of Winnie the Pooh toys in celebration.
"I twisted my foot this morning and it really hurts," Hanyu told Olympic Channel.
"(It) wasn't as bad as last year. This injury made me change my programme and sadly I couldn't perform the way I wanted. I could have done better."
Hanyu finished almost 30 points clear of Morisi Kvitelashvili whose almost flawless presentation of his "Mozart L'Opera Rock" free programme was good enough to secure the first ever ISU Grand Prix podium for a Georgian.
Another Japanese skater, Kazuki Tomono, fourth after the short programme, climbed to third overall with a 238.73-point total.
This year's world championship runners-up Evgenia Tarasova and Vladimir Morozov of Russia, the Skate America winners, who led the pairs competitions after the opening day, underlined their supremacy with a flawless skating of their free programme.
They've got a 141.78-point mark for their free routine to "Winter" by Balmorhea, winning the event with 220.25 points overall to earn a place in December's Grand Prix series finals.
Italian duo Nicole Della Monica and Matteo Guarise took second place with a 203.83-point overall mark, while another Russian pair Daria Pavliuchenko and Denis Khodykin were third on 190.01 points.
Two-time European bronze medallists Alexandra Stepanova and Ivan Bukin of Russia, who topped their section after the rhythm dance, maintained their lead with an impeccable rendition of their "Am I The One" by Beth Hart free dance.
They set a new world record in free dances, earning a 124.94-point mark to collect 199.43 points overall and also book their place in the Vancouver finals.
"Today we came onto the ice in the right mood," Stepanova told Russian TV. "We were very upset with our mistakes yesterday and now we're really happy that we managed to change the situation completely."
The Spanish pair Sara Hurtado and Kirill Khaliavin were second, almost 17 points behind the winners, while the Americans Christina Carreira and Anthony Ponomarenko finished third just 0.21 points further back.
Women's free programme will complete Saturday's schedule.