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Swedish ski legend Anja Pärson becomes a mum

Swedish alpine skiing star Anja Pärson revealed on Thursday she has become a mother to a baby boy after ending years of rumours last month when she revealed she had a long-term girlfriend.

Swedish ski legend Anja Pärson becomes a mum

Pärson’s 39-year-old partner Filippa gave birth to the baby boy on Wednesday.

“Early yesterday morning (Wednesday) the most beautiful little boy in the world arrived. I don’t think I could be happier,” said the former Olympic champion, who also published a photo of the newborn.

The 31-year-old, who retired following the World Cup earlier this year, has for years faced rumours about her personal life, before revealing on Swedish radio last month that she was in a relationship with a woman.

“I had never intended to fall in love with a woman. Never thought that my heart could beat so fast for a woman. I was insanely in love,” she revealed while hosting a programme on Sveriges Radio in late-June.

Pärson, who made her debut in 1988 at the World Cup, took 19 championship medals, 42 World Cup victories, and two overall World Cup titles in 2004 and 2005.

She also won six Olympic medals — slalom gold at the 2006 Turin Games, a giant slalom silver in the 2002 Salt Lake City Games, and four bronzes (slalom in 2002, combined and downhill in 2006, and super-combined in 2010.)

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SKIING

Austria avalanche kills three

An avalanche in the Salzburg region killed three people and injured two while they were skiing off-piste, Austria's Red Cross said Saturday.

Snow and avalanche protection fences seen on a clear day on mountains surrounding Lech am Arlberg, western Austria
Some mountains in Austria have snow and avalanche protection fences, like these seen on a clear day on mountains surrounding Lech am Arlberg, western Austria. ALEXANDER KLEIN / AFP

The accident happened Saturday about 2,400 metres (7,800 feet) up in the Lungau district, soon after 1:45 pm local time, Red Cross spokesman Anton Schilcher told the APA agency.

The snow buried eight of the group up to 4.5 metres deep, local emergency response official Christoph Wiedl told local media.

Two of the victims were already dead when their bodies were recovered, while the third died after being airlifted to hospital in Klagenfurt.

The two injured skiers were taken to hospital in the town of Tamsweg.

The skiers caught in the avalanche were from a group from the regions of Salzburg and Upper Austria.

In recent years, an average of around 20 people a year have been killed annually by avalanches in Austria.

The last two seasons were less deadly as the coronavirus pandemic reduced the number of skiers overall.

Avalanches killed four people in western Austria’s Tyrol region last February.

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