Figure skating-Kim fires coach who guided her to Olympic glory

By Pritha Sarkar

LONDON (Reuters) - Olympic champion Kim Yuna has fired her coach Brian Orser less than six months after he guided her to glory at the Vancouver Games.

Kim, the most famous female athlete in South Korea, credited Orser for her dazzling gold-medal performance in February when she earned record scores in the short and free programs, but that did not stop her abruptly terminating her four-year association with the Canadian.

"Meehee Park, Kim's mother,...met with Brian Orser...and informed the two-time Olympic medalist that he would no longer be retained to coach Kim," Orser's management IMG said in a statement.

"No reason was given for the sudden and unexpected decision."

Orser was told he was being fired on August 2 but had delayed making any announcement as he had hoped to work things out.

Kim's management company AT Sports later released a statement saying relations between the duo had been "uncomfortable" since May and that South Korea's only Olympic figure skating gold medalist had been training alone since June.

"I am honored to have worked with such a talented and gifted skater," said Orser. "I wish her all the best as she moves forward in her skating career."

Forbes magazine lists Kim as one of the highest-paid female athletes in the world, with annual earnings of almost $10 million. (Editing by Clare Fallon)