Mariana Vasileva: ”Skills are growing when competition increases”

Mariana Vasileva: ”Skills are growing when competition increases”

Today, National Gymnastics Arena in Baku hosts the 25th Azerbaijan and Baku Championships in Rhythmic Gymnastics. The tournament is attended by 117 gymnasts from all over Azerbaijan. The main coach of the Azerbaijani national team in rhythmic gymnastics Mariana Vasileva shared with Vestnik Kavkaza her expectations from the championship.

- What are your expectations for this championship? Will we hear new names this year?

- At each championship, I always expect more participants than on the previous one. At the same time, I always hope that their skills will be higher. Now I am very pleased with the level that I observe. The competitions of the smallest gymnasts born in 2008-2010 are already over. I noted more than 12 girls, but in general, there were practically no weak gymnasts. Girls born in 2010 showed very complex elements, very serious exercises. This indicates that we are developing. I know practically all children, follow their results. I monitor every day those who train under the leadership of the national team, and regularly call for viewing those who train in clubs. At the end of the year, I will select the most promising ones.

- Is the growth of skills is due to the fact that gymnastics is gaining popularity in the country?

- I think this is true not only due to gymnastics but in general, due to the development of sports. First, you pay attention to the number. We have been opening sections in 15 regions of Azerbaijan for 12 years. Skills are growing because the competition is increasing. Coaches compete, and there is a healthy rivalry among girls. Gymnasts are friends, and at the same time, they compete on the carpet.

- Are there any big competitions planned?

- Next year we will host the European and World Championships. At the European Championship, the junior group team and senior individual gymnasts will perform. The licensed World Championship will be held in Baku, and it is very important that our group team and individuals receive licenses for the Olympic Games in Tokyo. Now the competitions of the pre-juniors born in 2006-2007 are beginning. This is our hope and future of the 2020 pre-junior European Championship.

- Tomorrow, the senior competitions will be held. What are your expectations?

- Today, there was a demonstration performance of the junior team. They showed a very high preparation level. Only a month left before their performance at the World Championship in Sofia. I hope they will not only manage to keep at this level but will also be able to work out some minor mistakes. Three young gymnasts - Zohra Agamirova, Daria Sorokina and Veronica Khudis will participate in the World Championship in Bulgaria. And next year, they will be joined by three gymnasts, who are now working on the senior program.

- What program is prepared for the junior group team at the World Championship?

- We have two exercises, one in Spanish style with Spanish music, and the other is modern. Juniors and individual gymnasts will compete at the World Championship next year. It will be held for the first time for juniors. And the program includes both artistic and sports gymnastics. The championship is held in Russia. This year bronze medalist of the European Championship Arzu Jalilova, Narmina Samedova, and Narmin Bayramova are preparing for the championship. The three of them have already begun preparations for the upcoming championship.

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