Evening Standard

If Mohamed Al Fayed’s Harrods had supplied the clothes for Team GB it’s hardly likely he would also have been appointed deputy chef de mission. However, Mikhail Kusnirovich is fulfilling both roles with Russia.

He combines his Olympic job with running the Bosco fashion label, which is also providing the kit for Spain and the Ukraine.

Kusnirovich has been with the Russian squad since the 2002 Salt Lake Winter Games and sees London 2012 as the chance to create the right message for his country: “This is the new Russia and we are very open.”

However, he was not open enough to tell me what the Russian medal ambitions are or whether his country, struggling at ninth in the table, will improve.

“I do not want to put any pressure on the athletes,” he said.

“I never want to touch their dreams but I hope they do well.”

But, if the Games were to help him to expand his fashion range in this country, he could end up providing the kit for the two Premier League teams owned by Russians, Chelsea and Reading. “I have spoken to Roman Abramovich,” he said. “I know him. If we are asked, we’ll be ready.”


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