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Putin praises Russian figure skaters and hockey players for performance in PyeongChang

The Russian leader called the Olympic victory of men’s hockey players at the PyeongChang Olympics a big gift for millions of Russians

MOSCOW, February 28. /TASS/. Russia’s President Vladimir Putin lauded the performance by Russian athletes at the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea’s PyeongChang, especially noting the success of women’s figure skaters and the men’s ice hockey team.

At a Kremlin ceremony of giving awards to the Russian winners and medalists of the PyeongChang Olympics, Putin summed up the results of athletes’ performance in various sports disciplines.

First of all, the Russian leader praised the success of "our splendid female figure skaters" - Alina Zagitova and Yevgenia Medvedeva.

Alina Zagitova took home the gold in figure skating at the PyeongChang Olympics while Medvedeva won the silver.

"I congratulate you, both Alina and Zhenya [Yevgenia]. Without any exaggeration, they delighted both all their fans and the entire world by their exquisite technique, their inspired performance and skills. They not just won but attained the height unachievable for their rivals," Putin said.

The Russian leader also called the Olympic victory of men’s hockey players at the PyeongChang Olympics a big gift for millions of Russian fans.

The closing day of the 2018 Winter Games in South Korea’s PyeongChang entered the history of the Russian Olympic ice hockey with the team of neutral athletes from Russia edging the team from Germany 4-3 in the overtime of the match for the gold medal.

The match for the 2018 PyeongChang ice hockey gold at the 10,000-seat capacity Gangneung Hockey Center was the first Olympic final in 20 years for the team from Russia, which lost the gold medal game to the Czech Republic at the 1998 Winter Games in Japan’s Nagano.

"It is true that our national ice hockey squad made us get nervous a little, to put it mildly, but still they managed to pull themselves together and clinch the long-waited Olympic gold," the Russian president said.

Putin also praised the success of Russian skiers at the Olympics, noting that the medals were captured by young athletes.

"This is direct evidence that the legendary school of Russian skis is regaining its positions in the world," the Russian leader said, stressing that in this sport Russia had managed to create both the safety margin and the system of selecting talents.