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Torre vs Karpov

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PSC pushing for exhibition in early 2017.

Following the landmark meeting between President Rodrigo Duterte and Russian president Vladimir Putin during the APEC Leaders’ Summit in Lima, Peru, the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) also made a big leap towards improving its sporting relations with Russia with the plan of bringing in former world champion Anatoly Karpov for a goodwill game with Eugene Torre in the first quarter of 2017.

PSC chairman William ‘Butch’ Ramirez made this announcement after meeting with Russian sports minister Pavel Kolobkov and Maxin Ananyin, Humanitarian Attache of the Russian Federation yesterday morning.

Karpov, now 65, world champion from 1975 to 1985, is a contemporary of Torre, who he played against and lost in 1976.

Ramirez believes a reunion is in the making with Camp John Hay in Baguio City as the backdrop of their exhibition match.

Under Ramirez’s plans in coordination with the Russian government, the event will also feature seminars and similar fun games with noted lawmakers who love chess: Senators Manny Pacquiao and Aquilino Pimentel.

A courtesy call at Malacañang is also on the pipeline.

But what excites Ramirez even more is the vision of completing a sports accord with Russia with shooting, gymnastics and fencing as target sports as well as the importation of topnotch Russian coaches in line with the country’s buildup for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Also present during the meeting yesterday were PSC Sr. Executive Assistant Ronnel Abrenica, national training director Marc Velasco and gymnastics secretary-general Bettina Pou.

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