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Vanessa Crone and Paul Poirier of Canada perform their compulsory dance at the ISU Grand Prix Rostelecom Cup in Moscow on Friday. ((Yuri Kadobnov/Getty Images))

The Canadian ice dance pair of Vanessa Crone and Paul Poirier sits fourth after Friday's compulsory dance at the Rostelecom Cup in Moscow.

The event is the second competition in the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating.

Crone, 18, of Aurora, Ont., and Poirier, 17, of Unionville, Ont., scored 29.94 in the first round. They are about eight points behind leaders Meryl Davis and Charlie White of the United States, who scored 37.87.

Crone and Poirier were silver medallists at the World junior championships in 2008, and they are hoping for a strong showing at the upcoming 2010 Vancouver Olympics.

In the pairs competition, Mylène Brodeur, of Stanbridge-Station, Que., and John Mattatall, of Wallace, N.S., are seventh after scoring 46.66 in the short program. China's Qing Pang and Jian Tong lead the competition with a score of 65.40.

Return to competition

In the men's singles event, Russia's Evgeni Plushenko won the short program, scoring 82.25 points Friday in his first international competition since winning gold at the 2006 Turin Olympics.

Plushenko landed a clean quad-triple combination, but a few seconds later, Plushenko doubled a planned triple lutz.

"I got a little relaxed, I felt like I had done everything" after the opening jumps, Plushenko admitted.

Despite the minor flaw, he's almost seven points ahead of Japan's Takahiko Kozuka, who scored 75.50. American Johnny Weir struggled through his opening jumps, and sits third with a score of 72.57.

"I'm disappointed ... but I can overcome these barriers," Weir said.

Shawn Sawyer, of Edmundston, N.B., is Canada's lone entry in the men's singles competition. He is in eighth place, scoring 61.38 in the short program.

Toronto's Patrick Chan, a silver medallist at the worlds, withdrew because of a calf injury. He is expected to make his debut for the 2009-10 season at the Home Sense Skate Canada International, Nov. 22-25 in Kitchener, Ont.

In the women's singles, Amélie Lacoste, of Delson, Que., is currently in seventh position, scoring 51.82 in the short program. 

Hungary's Julia Sebestyen is the narrow leader with a score of 57.94 points. The medals are still up for grabs as less than three points separate the top five skaters. 

CBCSports.ca will provide live coverage of the Rostelecom Cup on Saturday, beginning at 12 p.m. ET.

With files from The Associated Press