By Dmitriy Rogovitskiy
ROSA KHUTOR, Russia, Feb 9 (Reuters) - Russian Ekaterina Shumilova's chances of a medal in the women's biathlon sprint misfired on Sunday when her rifle broke after a fall, leaving her trailing home in 60th place.
Shumilova collided with Krystina Palka and as she fell backwards, her rifle butt was almost broken off.
"I was skiing without any problems, but the shoot did not go as well as I had hoped," Shumilova told reporters.
"There are difficult climbs on the course and I put a lot of energy into this, so my legs were really sore. You really feel this on the descents. I think it was because of this that I fell."
She was not expecting her rifle to break, though.
"It is a massive shock. I really did not think that this could happen," Shumilova said.
"I need some time to get over all of this."
Despite her misfortune, Shumilova still won the right to take part in Tuesday's pursuit as the first 60 finishers of the sprint qualify.
Her rifle should be fixed by then.
"We have a good technical team and we will have time to fix it," she said. (Reporting By Dmitriy Rogovitskiy; editing by Peter Rutherford and Julien Pretot)