The message reads, in part:
“You are one of the legendary trainers who brought our country fame as a major sporting nation. You led the CSKA and Soviet national hockey teams to brilliant victories. The players you trained have gone on to win prestigious world competitions and become Olympic champions. Their achievements are the best measure of your work as a trainer and mentor.”
The President signed an executive order awarding the Order of Friendship to Mr Tikhonov, who is honorary president of the CSKA hockey club.
The award recognises Mr Tikhonov’s great contribution to developing Russian sport.
Under Mr Tikhonov’s direction the Soviet national hockey team won 8 world championships, 11 European championships and many other international competitions. The Soviet Olympic hockey team, trained by Viktor Tikhonov, three times won Olympic gold. The CSKA hockey team was Soviet champion continuously from 1978 to 1989.