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Plushenko to put up his dukes? Russian Boxing Federation can set up bout for figure skater

National figure skating choreographer Alexei Zheleznyakov challenged Plushenko to a duel in the ring to compel the Olympic champion to stop hurling insults against figure skating coach Eteri Tutberidze, as he explained

MOSCOW, January 14. /TASS/. The Russian Boxing Federation (RBF) is ready to organize a bout between Russia’s two-time Olympic Champion in figure skating Evgeni Plushenko and national figure skating choreographer Alexei Zheleznyakov, RBF Deputy Secretary General Kirill Shchekutyev told TASS on Thursday.

On Wednesday night, Zheleznyakov, who works as a choreographer on the team of Russia’s merited figure skating coach Eteri Tutberidze, challenged Plushenko to a duel in the ring.

Zheleznyakov explained on his social media VKontakte page that he wanted to compel Plushenko to stop hurling insults against Tutberidze and specialists from her team.

"All conflicts of this nature must be settled in the boxing ring with the corresponding sports gear," Shchekutyev said. "We are ready to organize this fight in the ring with professional referees, boxing gloves and protective gear."

"Any conflict can be settled in sports and it is a good example for the younger generation," the RBF official said. "Boxing is a gentlemen’s sport."

Before the start of the current season, two figure skaters - Alexandra Trusova and Alena Kostornaia - left their coach Eteri Tutberidze and joined the team led by Plushenko.

In December 2019, Tutberidze announced that Plushenko attempted to lure away one more of her students, namely Olympic Champion Alina Zagitova. This is when Zheleznyakov lashed out against Plushenko for the first time. Since then both Plushenko and Zheleznyakov have been trading barbs against each other even after Trusova parted ways with Tutberidze in May.

Russia’s two-time World Junior Figure Skating Champion Alexandra Trusova announced her decision in May to let go of her Head Coach Eteri Tutberidze and join Plushenko’s team. Tutberidze, 46, had been in charge of training Trusova since 2016 and the teen prodigy is currently the only figure skater in the history of female competitions to land a quadruple jump in combination, namely a quad toe loop with a quad Lutz jump.