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Drahoš ends contact campaign before presidential race

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Prague, Jan 22 (CTK) – Academic Jiri Drahos, the challenger of incumbent President Milos Zeman, finished the contact part of his campaign before the runoff vote in the Prague Lucerna hall on Monday.

Now he will concentrate on televised debated and media interviews before the second round set for January 26-27.

His former, failed rivals from the first round, Michal Horacek, Marek Hilser and Pavel Fischer, will still help him win over undecided voters in the days to come.

They will stage concerts in Czech towns.

According to the latest polls, the chances of both contenders are roughly the same. Drahos received 26.6 percent and Zeman 38.6 percent of the vote in the first round, but most of the defeated candidates have backed Drahos.

Drahos thanked his supporters, sponsors and candidates who supported him.

He said he was tremendously grateful for the generous gesture in which they expressed support to him immediately after the votes were counted in the first round.

On Tuesday, Drahos will have the presidential debate with Zeman on the commercial television station Prima and another one, on Czech Television, on Thursday.

Horacek, Hilser and Fischer will go some major towns, Ceske Budejovice, south Bohemia, Liberec, north Bohemia, and Sokolov, west Bohemia, to support Drahos’ bid.

Horacek said the current situation was like the fight of Czechoslovak ice hockey players against their Russian rivals.

“It is again as if we played against Russians. In fact, we are playing against them,” Horacek said.

Fischer pointed out the tremendous expectations in connection with the presidential election in the Czech Republic.

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