FISU President Oleg Matytsin competed for a team of university rectors ©FISU

International University Sports Federation (FISU) President Oleg Matytsin has joined students to celebrate national Students’ Day in Russia by taking part in a game of bandy. 

Matytsin, confirmed as the new head of FISU after unseating Frenchman Claude-Louis Gallien at the organisation's General Assembly in November, joined students at the event in Red Square.

The Russian played for a team of university rectors in a bandy match, a team winter sport played on ice, in which skaters use sticks to direct a ball into the opposing team's goal.

Matytsin scored and led his team to a 4-1 victory against a team comprising of members of the Ministry of Education of the Russian Federation, captained by the Minister of Education and Science Dmitry Livanov.

Deputy Prime Minister Olga Golodets was also among those in attendance at Red Square.

“It is a great privilege for me to be able to celebrate Russia’s Students Day by playing sport at an event which so many students participate in themselves,” said Matytsin, President of the Russian Students Sport Union (RSSU) for 10-years ahead of taking up his new role.

“FISU exists to serve all students who want to play sport all over the world and it is important to remember that they do this in between their studies.

“Events like this help to remind everyone that many student athletes are pursuing excellence in mind and body, I believe this to be the most advanced approach to sport that civilization has ever known and it is well worth celebrating.”

The match was played in Red Square in Russia's captial Moscow
The match was played in Red Square in Russia's captial Moscow ©FISU

The Students’ Day, also known as Tatiana Day, saw several activities being held on ice rinks across the country.

Matytsin has targeted implementing a strategic plan at FISU and is aiming to align the organisation better with the International Olympic Committee.

He also aims to enhance the body’s administration by encouraging greater continental representation, while also increasing more engagement between the Olympic Movement and students, he claimed. 

“It’s my first full year of a four-year mandate as President and I am determined to start showing the results of my administration as soon as possible,” said Matytsin.

“But more importantly we want students to start feeling the difference about FISU’s new direction as well.”