2 August 19:29 (BST)

Olympic synchro champion SHUROCHKINA (RUS) can feel the power

GLASGOW - Rio 2016 Olympic Games champion Mariia SHUROCHKINA (RUS) will channel the power of compatriots and five-time Olympic champions Natalia ISHCHENKO and Svetlana ROMASHINA on the first day of the synchronised swimming competition at the Glasgow 2018 European Championships. 

She will be leading her team in one of the most exciting events in the programme, the team free routine, as the preliminaries open the event on Friday morning, with Russia set to dominate.

"I feel the power of their soul," said SHUROCHKINA when asked about following in the footsteps of two of the sport's greats. "They were very strong girls and all my life I tried to be like them. So when I was in the team with them I just remember their appearance, their work. I remember everything, because I grew up with these girls on TV.

"I was with them in only one Olympic Games, so now I know how I should work because of their example. They were perfect girls. Now I hope that one day some girls will say, 'that SHUROCHKINA Mariia, she was fantastic and I want to be her'. So that's my target."

Svetlana KOLESNICHENKO and Varvara SUBBOTINA will also be aiming to follow ISHCHENKO and ROMASHINA's lead by retaining Russia's duet technical title on Friday afternoon.

In the eagerly anticipated mixed duet technical, Russia's Aleksandr MALTSEV and new partner Mayya GURBANBERDIEVA will try to hold their nerve against their Italian rivals, world champions Georgio MINISINI and Manila FLAMINI.

While Italy have modified their previous routine in line with the new rules for the 2018 European Championships, Russia have opted to showcase a completely new programme.

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