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Feline fortune-teller: Hermitage cat named among best oracles of FIFA World Cup

The ranking was compiled after analyzing the predictions and the popularity of the animal forecasters

ST.PETERSBURG, June 25. /TASS/. Achilles, a white-furred Hermitage male cat who has made flawless predictions for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, has been recognized as one of the tournament’s best prognosticators, St. Petersburg’s tourism committee said on Monday.

The TurStat analytical agency has drawn up a list of the World Cup’s best oracles among animals in the cities hosting the championship. "Achilles the cat from St. Petersburg, Yakov Potapych the bear from Moscow, Cleopatra the tapir from Nizhny Novgorod’s Limpopo zoo, Spartak the lemur from Yekaterinburg, Harry the otter from Sochi, Yasha the deer from Khimki, near Moscow, and Zabiyaka the she-goat from Samara are among the most successful and popular oracles for the results of the World Cup matches in Russia," the committee’s press service said.

The ranking was compiled after analyzing the predictions and the popularity of the animal forecasters.

During the World Cup, the blue-eyed cat was correct in choosing the Russian national team as the winner over Saudi Arabia at the 2018 FIFA World Cup’s opener in Moscow on June 14 and also the outcomes of the matches at the stadium in St. Petersburg. Achilles also predicted the victory of Iran’s team over Morocco on June 15, Russia’s victory over Egypt on June 19 and Brazil’s victory over Costa Rica on June 22.

Achilles had been selected as the animal oracle because he displayed analytical capabilities and unique behavior. Moreover, Achilles is deaf as many white cats are, yet this impairment does not sidetrack the feline and lets him better concentrate on his predictions.

The Hermitage cat was right about the outcomes of three out of four 2017 Confederations Cup matches played in St. Petersburg, including the opening and final matches. His "performance" during the World Cup is a joint project on bolstering tourism to St. Petersburg and the Hermitage Museum.

Achilles will predict the results of the World Cup’s matches due to be held in St. Petersburg on June 26, July 3 and July 10.

Russia selected 11 host cities to be the venues for the matches of the 2018 World Cup and they are Moscow, St. Petersburg, Sochi, Kazan, Saransk, Kaliningrad, Volgograd, Rostov-on-Don, Nizhny Novgorod, Yekaterinburg and Samara. The matches of the 2018 World Cup are being held between June 14 and July 15 at 12 stadiums located in the 11 above-mentioned cities across Russia.