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Putin Celebrates 63rd Birthday Playing Hockey With Pros

Russian President Vladimir Putin has celebrated his 63rd birthday by playing hockey with well-known hockey players and participants of the Night Hockey League.

Putin was debriefed on October 7 by Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu about the Russian Air Force operation in Syria, before taking to the ice in the Black Sea resort of Sochi with government officials.

The gala match, which was shown live on Russian television, ended with Putin scoring seven goals for the victorious team.

The Russian president previously participated in a Night Hockey League game in May.

Putin, who only learned to play hockey several years ago, is vastly inferior to the others who play with him, all of whom play "easy" on Putin and allow him to shoot on goal until he scores.

The All-Russia Festival of Night Hockey League, featuring amateur ice-hockey teams, was set up in 2011 with the support of the president and Russian ice-hockey veterans.

Based on reporting by AP, AFP, TASS, and Sputnik News