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Soothsaying otter predicts Russian hockey victory over Finland

February 19, 2014, 15:37 UTC+3 SOCHI
Otters Ashley and Harry are putting up a show in Sochi, similar to the one with Paul the Octopus
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© ITAR-TASS/Oleg Nechaev

SOCHI, February 19. /ITAR-TASS/. One of two soothsaying otters at the Sochi aquarium predicted the victory for the Russian national ice hockey squad over Finland in their quarterfinals match of the 2014 Winter Olympics, a deputy director of the aquarium said on Wednesday.

Otters Ashley and Harry are putting up a show in Sochi, similar to the one with Paul the Octopus, a marine soothsayer who predicted the outcome of all matches at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.

Zhanna Zazina said that on Wednesday choosing between the Russian and Finnish teams otter Harry gave his victory prediction in favor of the Russian squad, which begins its quarterfinal match later in the day at 4:30 p.m. Moscow time (12:30 GMT).

She also said that during the Olympics all staff members at the aquarium cheer not only for Russian athletes, but for the otters as well so that they make correct predictions.

“We make the otter skip its meal for each incorrect prediction, particularly when Harry’s wrong prediction involves the Russian team,” Zazina said adding that everyone worried after Harry wrongly predicted Russia’s hockey loss to Norway on Tuesday.

She also said that since the Olympics in Sochi started on February 7, Harry made 13 correct predictions out of two dozen attempts.

The staff also hopes that their otters will beat the record of Paul the Octopus. Paul became an international celebrity after he made only two mistaken predictions at the 2008 Euro Cup and none at the 2010 World Cup.

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