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VELIKAIA Sophia
NOC Russia   
GenderWomen
Born 08 Jun 1985 in Alma Ata, URS
Human Interest
Further Personal Information
Family Husband Aleksei Mishin, son Oleg, one daughter
Residence Moscow, RUS
Occupation Army, Athlete, Sports Administrator
Languages Russian
Sport Specific Information
When and where did you begin this sport? She began fencing in 1998 in Almaty, Kazakhstan.
Why this sport? Her older brother Grigoriy started fencing and suggested she should try it as well.
Name of coach Christian Bauer [national], FRA
Handedness Right
General Interest
Hobbies Watching movies, reading, travelling, playing volleyball. (lenta.ru, 07 Feb 2016; rusfencing.ru, 01 Jul 2015)
Memorable sporting achievement Winning gold in the team sabre at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. (sovsport.ru, 08 Mar 2017)
Hero / Idol Russian sabre fencer Stanislav Pozdnyakov. (sovsport.ru, 08 Mar 2017)
Injuries She missed the 2015 Russian Championships due to an elbow injury. (team-russia2016.ru, 26 May 2015)
Sporting philosophy / motto "Fencing is always about two competitors who play a game with each other. You offer, you trick, sometimes you lose, and you should accept this loss. Life is the same game." (rusfencing.ru, 15 Jan 2013)
Awards and honours For winning gold at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, she received the Order of Honour from the president of the Russian Federation. (kremlin.ru, 25 Aug 2016; function.mil.ru, 26 Aug 2016)

She was named the 2015 Female Athlete of the Year in the Russian Federation. (interfax.ru, 10 Dec 2015)

In recognition of her achievements at the 2012 Olympic Games in London, she was decorated with the Order for Merits to the Fatherland [first grade] by the president of the Russian Federation. (kremlin.ru, 13 Aug 2012)

She holds the title of Honoured Master of Sport in the Russian Federation. (sovsport.ru, 08 Mar 2017)
Famous relatives Her husband Aleksei Mishin has represented the Russian Federation in Greco-Roman wrestling, and won gold in the 84kg category at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens. (mir24.tv, 24 May 2018; SportsDeskOnline, 05 Jul 2018)
Ambitions To win individual gold at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. (sovsport.ru, 08 Mar 2017)
Other information OTHER ROLES
She has served as the head of the Athletes' Commission of the Russian Olympic Committee. (sovsport.ru, 08 Mar 2017)

POST-OLYMPIC PAUSE
She decided to take a break from fencing following the 2012 Olympic Games in London. She gave birth to her son and missed major international competitions in 2013. She did not compete for almost a year before returning at the 2014 World Cup event in Antalya, Turkey. She also missed the 2016/17 season after competing at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. (rusfencing.ru, 16 Mar 2014; sovsport.ru, 08 Mar 2017)

FURTHER EDUCATION
She has also studied at the Higher School of Cultural Policy and Administration at Moscow State University in the Russian Federation. (allsportinfo.ru, 24 Jun 2013)

Major Results
Year Rank Event Venue
Olympic Games
2016 1 Team Sabre Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
2016 2 Individual Sabre Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
2012 2 Individual Sabre London, England
2008 4 Individual Sabre Beijing, China
2008 5 Team Sabre Beijing, China
World Championships
2018 2 Individual Sabre Wuxi, China
2018 2 Team Sabre Wuxi, China
2015 1 Individual Sabre Moscow, Russia
2014 Quarterfinal Individual Sabre Kazan, Russia
2011 1 Individual Sabre Catania, Italy
2011 1 Team Sabre Catania, Italy
2010 1 Team Sabre Paris, France
2010 3 Individual Sabre Paris, France
2009 4 Team Sabre Antalya, Turkey
2009 Quarterfinal Individual Sabre Antalya, Turkey
2007 3 Team Sabre St. Petersburg, Russia
2007 7 Individual Sabre St. Petersburg, Russia
2006 3 Team Sabre Turin, Italy
2005 2 Individual Sabre Leipzig, Germany
2005 2 Team Sabre Leipzig, Germany
2004 1 Team Sabre New York, NY, United States
2003 5 Team Sabre Havana, Cuba
European Championships
2018 1 Individual Sabre Novi Sad, Serbia
2018 1 Team Sabre Novi Sad, Serbia
2016 1 Individual Sabre Torun, Poland
2015 1 Individual Sabre Montreux, Switzerland
2010 2 Individual Sabre Leipzig, Germany
2010 2 Team Sabre Leipzig, Germany
2008 1 Individual Sabre Kiev, Ukraine
2008 5 Team Sabre Kiev, Ukraine
2007 2 Individual Sabre Ghent, Belgium
2006 1 Individual Sabre Izmir, Turkey
2006 1 Team Sabre Izmir, Turkey
2005 2 Individual Sabre Zalaegerszeg, Hungary
2004 1 Team Sabre Copenhagen, Denmark
2004 5 Individual Sabre Copenhagen, Denmark
2003 1 Team Sabre Bourges, France