Mariana Vasileva: Azerbaijani gymnasts achieved historic victory at Islamic Games in Baku
The head coach of the Azerbaijani national rhythmic gymnastics team, Mariana Vasileva, in a conversation with a correspondent of Vestnik Kavkaza thanked the First Vice-President of Azerbaijan and President of the Federation of Gymnastics of Azerbaijan, Mehriban Aliyeva, for the inclusion of rhythmic gymnastics to the program of the 4th Islamic Solidarity Games in Baku.
"I think this is very important. I want to emphasize that this is the merit of our first vice-president and president of our Federation, Mehriban Aliyeva, who wants very much to show that women are equal to men not only in Europe, but also in the Islamic world. For example, our girls in Azerbaijan have more Olympic licenses than boys, and this shows that we have the development of women's gymnastics in the foreground, and not only artistic gymnastics. We could see this today, during the performance of the representatives of our women's gymnastics team, " she noted.
In this regard, we are very happy to see the gymnasts from Indonesia, Syria, Kyrgyzstan and Libya today in Baku. "Libya and Syria are showing a fairly good level - the both gymnasts reached the finals, which is not so easy, because our gymnasts and gymnasts from Uzbekistan participate in the tournament. Anastasia Serdyukova and Marina Durunda were the participants of the Olympic Games. And these girls compete with them on a par, which gives them a great chance to show themselves. When gymnasts from such countries as Syria and Indonesia qualifies to the finals, this promotes the fact that rhythmic gymnastics is becoming more popular in their homeland, which means that the number of people, who want to do gymnastics, increases, " Mariana Vasileva said.
The head coach of the Azerbaijani national team in rhythmic gymnastics reminded that Azerbaijan has already passed this way. "We have already experienced this. When we started, we had few girls who wanted to do artistic gymnastics, seriously - many quit sports very quickly. And now we have the opportunity to select even the smallest ones, that is, we can afford to train both seniors and juniors, " she explained.
A great progress in the development of gymnastics in Azerbaijan began after the holding of the 1st European Games in Baku. ”Parents have more patience now. If before they thought that you could immediately make a champion from a child, then gradually we managed to change their thinking. Mehriban Aliyeva helped in this. You see how many sports events are organized in Azerbaijan, not only in rhythmic gymnastics, but in general. People have a desire to come to the stands. I was very happy to see so many viewers today. It is important that not only artistic gymnastics, but also other gymnastic disciplines are developing, " Mariana Vasileva said.
Speaking about the first gold medal of the Islamic Solidarity Games, won by Marina Durunda, Jalya Piriyeva and Zohra Agamirova, the head coach of the national team stressed that a worthy performance of her gymnasts that led to this historic victory was especially important for her today. ‘’It was difficult for the team, due to the fact that its leader, Marina Durunda, was seriously injured and has not recovered yet. She is always very nervous, it was her first start in 7 months, so this was a stressful situation. But they managed it, and I'm glad about that, " she confessed.