Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny has said he is confident he could beat President Vladimir Putin in a fair election.
Mr Navalny said in his first interview since the official start of campaigning that he cannot win as long as the Kremlin controls what goes on television, where the majority of Russians get their news.
The anti-corruption crusader is barred from running in the March election because of two criminal convictions.
He said the Kremlin does not want him to run because he could sway the election.
The latest poll by the Levada Centre, published last week, shows 75% of those surveyed saying they would vote for Mr Putin.