By Nick Butler

Vladimir Putin displayed a big stick of the literal kind when excelling in the ice hockey demonstration match ©AFP/Getty ImagesRussian President Vladimir Putin was a surprise participant in a Night Hockey League gala ice hockey match in Sochi, as he reiterated his sporting supremacy with a six-goal performance.

Sporting the number 11 on his jersey Putin, a well known sportsman who is a black belt inudo, scored two goals in each of the three periods as his "Stars of the Night" team romped to a 20-5 victory over Moscow based opponents "Gentlemen of Fortune".

Putin's performance was praised by local commentators, with one claiming that any player who could perform like that the whole season would be offered million-dollar contract deals.

But others were more skeptical and claimed that the 61-year-old benefited from the opposition's reluctance to mark him.

After the game ended, Putin presented the team's President Alexander Yakushev, a double Olympic gold medal winner from Sapporo 1972 and Innsbruck 1976, with a trophy, before signing autographs and mingling with the crowd.

Taking place in the the Bolshoy Ice Dome and Shayba Arena Stadiums where matches took place during Sochi, the exhibition match came at the end of a week long tournament featuring 114 teams representing 55 Russian regions and 12 countries.

As well as judo and now ice hockey, other sports that Putin has turned his hand to range from deep sea diving, to fly fishing and horseback riding.

But, in addition to outlining his physical prowess, sport also plays a much more serious role for Putin, with major events such as Sochi 2014 a show of strength to demonstrate his nation's return to a position of international supremacy.

As well as the vast number of new facilities built ahead of the Games, Russia duly illustrated this by finishing on top of the medals table at both the Olympic and the Paralympic Games, with Putin frequently present when many of these medals were won.

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