Take it to the tatami? Putin offers to meet female US journalist on judo mat
The amusing exchange took place at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, where Putin was meeting with the heads of international news agencies.
Mathieson, who is executive editor for international government at Bloomberg News, was among those putting questions to the Russian leader.
After revealing that she was a practitioner of Thai boxing, the journalist said she wouldn't fancy a meeting with the Russian president in the ring.
“I’m not sure I would dare to go against you in a boxing ring,” Mathieson said.
The Russian leader, who famously has a black belt in judo, reacted with humor to Mathieson’s remark, offering to swap the ring for the tatami.
“First of all, I would not agree to fight against you in a boxing ring,” the Russian president said.
“Not because you are a lady, but simply because everybody should stick to their own business. I have never done boxing. You are always welcome to the tatami, I’m ready to work with you there. But I assure you I will have a competitive advantage there,” Putin quipped.