Igor Levitin, an aide to Vladimir Putin and first vice-president of the Russian Olympic Committee, has declared his intention to stand for the Presidency of the European Table Tennis Union (ETTU).
In an open letter published on the International Table Tennis Federation's (ITTF) official website, Levitin claims he will only run for office if he receives support from ETTU Member Federations in his bid to "get European table tennis out of its protracted crisis".
The Russian official, who serves on the ITTF President Advisory Council, said he was concerned about the future of the sport in Europe and suggested the current ETTU leadership had stemmed the progress of the organisation by being "reluctant to change".
He also appears to question the direction of the body under President Ronald Kramer, first elected to the role in 2013.
It is not yet clear whether Kramer intends to stand for re-election at the ETTU Ordinary Congress in Warsaw, scheduled to be held on September 16.
Levitin's candidacy comes despite a ruling from the World Anti-Doping Agency in its four-year package of sanctions against Russia after the country was found to have manipulated the Moscow Laboratory data.
The rule states that Russian Government officials and representatives "may not be appointed to sit and may not sit as members of the Boards or Committees or any other bodies of any code signatory (or its members) or association of signatories".
It has not yet been enforced as the case is pending at the Court of Arbitration for Sport after the Russian Anti-Doping Agency appealed the list of sanctions.
Levitin, chairman of Supervisory Board of the Table Tennis Federation of Russia, highlighted securing more media coverage and "enabling our Member Associations to host and showcase our sport" as his main priorities if he is elected ETTU President.
"After careful consideration of the table tennis situation in Europe, following the formal call for elections made by the ETTU yesterday, I want to announce to you formally that I intend to run for the upcoming ETTU Presidential election," he wrote in the letter.
"However, I will only run for office if I see that Member Associations want to get European table tennis out of its protracted crisis.
"I strongly believe that it is only together that we will be able to restore the former greatness of European table tennis."
Levitin has held several roles within the Russian Government, serving as chairman of Supervisory Board of the Table Tennis Federation of Russia for eight years between 2004 and 2012.
He was appointed as a Presidential aide to Putin in 2013.