Tennis star Maria Sharapova entered the arena carrying the flag, beginning a procession of Russian athletic legends. She handed off the torch to Yelena Isinbayeva, who handed it to wrestler Aleksandr Karelin, who passed it to gymnast Alina Kabaeva. From there, figure skater Irina Rodnina and Olympic goalie Vladislav Tretiak, both three-time gold medalists, lit the cauldron together in a spectacular pyrotechnic display.
— Jay Busbee
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