Canadian skier Groenewoud undergoes knee surgery, expects to be ready for Sochi

Rosalind Groenewoud of Calgary flies through the air as she practises on the half pipe on the Blackcomb Mountain in Whistler, B.C., Thursday, July 7, 2013. Groenewoud isn't letting surgery to both of her knees deter her expectations for the Sochi Olympics.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

BANFF, Alta. - Canadian freestyle skier Roz Groenewoud underwent arthroscopic surgery this week to repair both of her knees, but is expected to recover in time for the Sochi Olympics.

The women's halfpipe star injured her left knee in training at last week's Dew Tour in Colorado. The 2011 world champion had the procedures done Tuesday and is expected to fully recover in four to six weeks.

"It wasn't my plan to have knee surgery this close to the Olympics," she said in a Canadian Freestyle Ski Association release. "But I can't wait to have two fully functional knees and ski without pain. No one said this road to Sochi would be easy but luckily I like challenges."

The Feb. 7-23 Sochi Games begin in just over seven weeks. Groenewoud is expected to be a podium contender in women's halfpipe skiing, a discipline that will make its Olympic debut next year.

Given that Groenewoud has had nagging issues with her right knee as well, her team made the decision to scope both joints at the same time after consultation with an orthopedic surgeon.

"The menisci problems of both knees put her at risk for more severe injuries," said Dr. Mark Heard. "I'm very optimistic about a speedy recovery."

Heard added the prognosis was excellent given Groenewoud's "two very healthy knees in all other respects plus good leg strength and body mechanics."

Groenewoud, from Calgary, secured her place on the Olympic team last week despite the injury. She was able to complete the qualifying run and finished 10th.

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