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Putin declares the Sochi Olympic Games open

Moscow, Feb 7 (EFE). Russian President Vladimir Putin declared the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi open at 10:27 p.m. Friday. The official inauguration came halfway through the opening ceremony of the games at the new Fisht Olympic Stadium in Sochi Olympic Park on the banks of the Black Sea. The 22nd Winter Games brings together 6,000 athletes from 88 countries.

Figure skating: Fernandez leads, Russians battle for Olympic berth

Spaniard Javier Fernandez scored a personal best in the short programme to keep his title defence on track at the European figure skating championships on Thursday. The 22-year-old outshone his rivals to open up a 6.05-point lead on Russian Sergei Voronov with Czech Tomas Verner third going into Saturday's free skating final. But the battle for Russia's sole men's berth at the Winter Olympics has been thrown open as national champion Maxim Kovtum is sitting fourth after errors in his routine.

Overall World Cup standings after four skiing events

VIENNA, Dec. 8 (Xinhua) -- Following are the overall World Cup after the fourth of 22 events, a biathlon meet on the Pillerseetal course of Hochfilzen, Austria on Sunday: 1. Gabriela Soukalova, Czech Republic, 148 points 2. Synnoeve Solemdal, Norway, 145 3. Olga Zaitseva, Russia, 143 4. Irina Starykh, Russia, 142 5. Tora Berger, Norway, 132 Marie Laure Brunet, France, 132

Sochi 2014 volunteer team is ready, says committee

MOSCOW, Dec. 5 (Xinhua) -- The organizing committee of Sochi Winter Olympics said Thursday that up to 25,000 volunteers will be working at the Games. Dec. 5 is the International Volunteer Day celebrated since 1985. According to the Sochi 2014 website, volunteers come to the Games from 26 recruiting and training centers across Russia. About 2,000 volunteers come from other countries, mostly from the United States, Canada, Ukraine, Britain and Kazakhstan. The team also recruited several volunteers from Japan, New Zealand, Cameroon, Congo and Pakistan.

Football: Russian Cup game suspended after crowd trouble

A Russian Cup game between the country's most successful side Spartak Moscow and Shinnik of Yaroslavl was suspended on Wednesday after Spartak fans clashed with security forces and lit huge flares. The referee stopped the game in the second half when a Spartak fan tried to rush onto the pitch, was arrested and fans then battled with police after trying to come to the fan's aid, television footage showed. Flares lit up the entire rear portion of the Shinnik stadium and Spartak captain Dmitry Kombarov personally intervened by going to the stands to calm the fans.

Football: Zenit extend winning streak in Yekaterinburg

Leaders Zenit St Petersburg battled back from a goal down to extend their winning streak in the Russian Premier to eight matches with a 2-1 victory away to Ural Yekaterinburg on Saturday. Zenit stay five points clear of second-placed Spartak Moscow, who beat visiting Rustov 2-0. Another Moscow side, Lokomotiv, who started the weekend in joint second place, travel to Rubin Kazan on Sunday. Zenit started confidently and were awarded a penalty in the 10th minute when Ural goalkeeper Alexei Solosin fouled Brazilian forward Hulk.

Football: Lokomotiv thrash Amkar to go second

Two-time former Russian champions Lokomotiv Moscow joined city rivals Spartak in second place on the strength of a 4-0 home win over Amkar Perm on Monday. Lokomotiv collected 27 points from 13 matches to stay five points behind leaders Zenit St Petersburg. Lokomotiv's goal rush began when Senegalese forward Dame N'Doye scored with a 10-metre header from Renat Yanbayev's left-handed cross. Six minutes before the break Brazilian striker Maicon added another, sending the ball into an unguarded post on Alexander Samedov's precise cross.

Football: Russia thrash Luxembourg to close in on World Cup berth

Russia moved closer to a berth in the 2014 World Cup with a confident 4-0 win over hosts Luxembourg in their European qualifying Group F here on Friday. Lokomotiv Moscow midfielder Alexander Samedov, Zenit St Petersburg halfback Viktor Faizukin, Spartak Moscow's Denis Glushakov and Zenit forward Alexander Kerzhakov scored one apiece to put Russia on 21 points with just one match remaining. Second-placed Portugal, who are currently four points behind, take on Israel later on Friday. "I think we played a quality match tonight," Russia's manager Fabio Capello said.

Football: Russia thrash Luxembourg to close in on World Cup berth

Russia moved closer to a berth in the 2014 World Cup with a confident 4-0 win over hosts Luxembourg in their European qualifying Group F here on Friday. Lokomotiv Moscow midfielder Alexander Samedov, Zenit St Petersburg halfback Viktor Faizukin, Spartak Moscow's Denis Glushakov and Zenit forward Alexander Kerzhakov scored one apiece to put Russia on 21 points with just one match remaining. Second-placed Portugal, who are currently four points behind, take on Israel later on Friday.

Football: Spartak beat CSKA in derby to clinch lead in Russia

Three-time former champions Zenit St Petersburg went top of the Russian Premier League with a confident 4-0 win at Rostov on Sunday. Zenit joined nine-time Russian champions Spartak Moscow, who thrashed city rivals CSKA 3-0 , and CSKA on 20 points with Zenit taking the summit due to better goal difference. Zenit's Portuguese midfielder Miguel Danny put his side into a 51st minute lead when he received Hulk's precise pass into Rostov's area to send the ball into the net from close range under helpless 'keeper Stipe Pletikosa.
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