MOSCOW, January 23 (Itar-Tass) - The Russian national team has good chances to vie for medals in 11 sports disciplines at the 2014 Winter Olympics, which kick off on February 7 in Russia’s Black Sea resort city of Sochi, the president of the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) said on Thursday.
Earlier in the day the executive committee of the ROC approved the final roster of the national Olympic team, which will consist of record 223 athletes, including 19 in reserve, competing in 15 sports disciplines.
“We have the youngest team in our [Olympic] history,” Alexander Zhukov said adding that the average age of athletes is four years below that of the Russian team at the 2010 Olympics in Canada’s Vancouver.
“The average age of an athlete is little over 22,” he said. “Our athletes will lay claim to medals in 11 sports, which is twice as much comparing to Vancouver.”
The Russian national team at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics consisted of 177 athletes. The team finished the Olympics in Canada with its worst ever medal tally in Winter Games, clinching three golds and ranking in 11th place in the overall medals standings.
The then president, Dmitry Medvedev called the performance of the team “dismal” and told the country’s sports officials at that time to sum up their courage and resign from their posts. Several officials followed his advice, including then-President of the Russian Olympic Committee Leonid Tyagachyov, who quit the next month after the Games.