POSTED: May 20th 2010

New Russian sports leader Alexander Zhukov promises new era

Alexander Zhukov, Putin's deputy prime minister is stepping in to overhaul Russian sports / Image: Sochi 2014
Alexander Zhukov, Putin's deputy prime minister is stepping in to overhaul Russian sports / Image: Sochi 2014

SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT / Sports Features Communications

MOSCOW, May 20: In a change of leads at the Russian NOC Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Zhukov was elected to take the helm and energetically made it clear that Russian sports were now marching to a different drummer.

Zhukov is a close ally to prime minister Vladimir Putin and has hands on experience in the Russian sports world as chairman of the Sochi 2014 Supervisory Board. He was put forward for the position by the All-Russian Summer Olympic Sports Association and the Russian Ski Federation. The Russian Olympic Committee elected him with strong backing gathering 204 votes out of a possible 220.

Following the country’s worst medal count ever at the Games in Vancouver, Russian president Dmitry Medvedev demanded top sports officials to either resign or risk being fired. He ran for the position unopposed by anyone to take up the daunting task.

Russia won only three golds and an overall 15 medals which was a far cry from the imposing numbers the country racked up in earlier times. In fact the numbers paled looking back sixteen years to Lillehammer 1994 when the team took home 11 gold, 8 silver, and 4 bronze.

Head of Sochi 2014 Dmitry Chernyshenko said: “It is with great pleasure that we welcome Mr Zhukov as the new President of the Russian Olympic Committee.

“Mr Zhukov has been involved with Sochi 2014 from the start and has always been a very strong advocate of Russia’s first Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.  His extensive experience of sport in Russia and knowledge of the Olympic Movement make him an ideal President of the Russian Olympic Committee.

“Today’s appointment will open a new page in the history of the development of both elite and grass roots sport in Russia.”

Zhukov takes the place of Leonid Tyagachyov, who resigned as Russian Olympic Committee President in March 2010.

Keywords · Russian NOC · Sochi 2014 · Alexander Zhukov · Vladimir Putin

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