MOSCOW, November 13. /TASS/. Russian chess grandmaster Sergei Karjakin has joined the Putin Team social movement.
"I have always openly supported Vladimir Putin and now I can finally do that officially. The Putin Team. Count me in," Karjakin wrote on Twitter.
On November 2, Russian ice hockey star Alexander Ovechkin, who plays for the national team and the Washington Capitals of the National Hockey League, wrote on Instagram that he was creating a new social movement calling it the Putin Team. "Personal wins are always good, but as far as ice hockey and any other activity go, being a team is crucial for achieving a victory. Only a team is capable of changing the tide of the game and doing the impossible. As for me, I am ready to become part of such a team," he wrote. Ovechkin pointed out that he "never made a secret of my attitude to our president, always openly supporting him." "I am sure that there are many of us who support Vladimir Putin. So let us come together and show everyone how strong and united Russia can be," the ice hockey star added.
According to the Russian Presidential Spokesman Dmitry Peskov, the Kremlin, on the whole, welcomes Ovechkin’s plan to support President Vladimir Putin by creating a social movement.
Russian rhythmic gymnastics team headed by President of the national Rhythmic Gymnastics Federation Irina Viner-Usmanova, ice hockey stars Ilya Kovalchuk (SKA St. Petersburg) and Evgeni Malkin (Pittsburgh Penguins), former coach of the national football team and member of the State Duma (lower house of parliament) Valery Gazzayev already joined the Putin Team movement.
Karjakin holds the record for the world's youngest chess grandmaster, having qualified for this title at the age of 12 years and 7 months. He won the 2012 World Rapid Chess Championship, the Chess World Cup 2015, and the 2016 World Blitz Chess Championship.
In March 2017, Karjakin became a member of the Russian Civic Chamber.