Russian PM exhorts athletes to do best at Sochi Games

Moscow: Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has expressed the hope that Russian athletes would do their best at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.

With the conclusion of the London games, Russia was one step closer to its Winter Games in Sochi. "I hope that our performance will be super successful, or at any rate as good as that of the British team in London," Interfax news agency quoted Medvedev as saying.

Russia ranked fourth in the London Olympics with 24 gold, 25 silver and 33 bronze medals, reports Xinhua.

Before the 2012 Olympics, Russia had set a minimum target of 25 gold medals, in a bid to reach a top-three place in the medal table.

During the Beijing 2008 Olympics, Russia reached top three behind China and the US with 72 medals, including 23 golds.

"The Russian team did a good job at the Olympic Games. I thank our athletes for the emotions they gave us," Medvedev tweeted Monday.

The national delegation`s Olympic performance has been a hot topic for discussion in Russia recently.

Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko said that Russian athletes` performance was "great", and that Russia is among the world`s top ten most powerful sporting countries.