Eljan Hajiyev: "Ladies are texting me... I don't have a fan like him" - INTERVIEW - PHOTO

21 May 2024 12:23
Eljan Hajiyev: "Ladies are texting me... I don't have a fan like him" - INTERVIEW - PHOTO

Azerbaijan national judoka Eljan Hajiyev’s interview to Idman.bize.

- Eljan, let's start from the beginning. How did you come to judo?

- I have been doing judo for about thirteen years. So, my classmate was going to judo. I also went to watch his training a couple of times, and from that time I got interested and signed up for training. However, my friend's leg was broken and he could not continue judo.

- How is your friendship? Does it continue?

- No. He moved to Russia with his family years ago. That's how we lost comm.

- Are your friends mostly athletes?

- Actually, I know very few people close to me. I have more friends who are athletes. I have a namesake, he is my childhood friend. He is also an athlete. Turan Bayramov and I have been friends since we were teenagers. Even today, we accompany each other when we go to competitions.

- Eljan, is there another athlete in your family?

- I have three sisters, but none of them are athletes. My father was engaged in kingboxing at that time. He wants me to do what he cannot do. My father was my biggest supporter throughout my life. I do my best to make her hope come true. He shares my videos on Tik-tok and Instagram every day. I've never had a fan like him.

- But now you also have female fans. Especially after becoming the European champion.

- Yes (smiles). There are women who write on social networks. They often congratulate. I thank them, that's it. I treat them the way I treat everyone. In general, I'm not talking about being the European champion all day. My main goal is the Olympics. Europe was one of the steps and remained in the past. After a while it will be forgotten. Therefore, it is necessary to sign new successes.

- Do you think you will be able to go to the Paris-2024 Summer Olympic Games?

- In fact, I have solved 50-60 percent of the case. But still I can't say an exact word. Everything is in God's hands.

- Speaking of the Olympics, I would like to know your opinion about your competitors.

- Murad Fatiyev is a difficult opponent. There was a very strong competition between us. This year, I lost in only one competition - the Grand Slam in Baku, and Murad won it. Vugar Talibov and Murad Fatiyev are both strong competitors. In general, there is strong competition in the 90 kg category.

- When I watch your meetings, one nuance always catches my attention. You have a lot of respect for your opponents. This is especially evident in your post-battle behavior.

- Each opponent should be treated with respect. I might reflexively rejoice when I win, but I immediately gather myself, approach my opponent, and shake hands. For example, I beat two local judokas in France. I raised both of their hands and hugged and kissed them. Their family watched their match there. There have been many times in Baku that I have lost the race that my family came to watch. I put myself in their place for a moment. The French shared this gesture of mine in social networks with great respect.

- Let's go back to your childhood. How did you spend your childhood?

- I was a very naughty. I was so naughty that the teachers created opportunities for me to skip class. At school, I was just waiting for the lesson to end and to go to my training. I used to get five in gym class alone. And my math was good. The teacher was teaching the lesson, I was thinking about what trick I would do in the evening practice. On the fifth day of the week, we learned different tricks than other days. That day I woke up so happy that today we will wrestle. I even lived as a robot for a while. I would go to training in the morning, come home and sleep and then go to training again. But training and home. In general, I have been fond of sports since childhood. When I didn't listen to my mother's words, she blackmailed me that I wouldn't let her practice. I was crying all day too. In short, my childhood was spent in the hall.

- Have you seen the consequences of your suffering since that time, or only in recent years?

- In my childhood, I was not a very successful athlete, I lost most of the competitions. My coach used to give me a medal to show at home so that I wouldn't get discouraged. There were guys in our training hall who gave medals in every competition, now there are none of them, only me. My coach Hikmet Aliyev was always by my side, he never gave up hope. He always told me to be patient, your time will come. You will be a very strong athlete when you grow up. My family also supported me a lot. Even when you lost, they said that you lose ten races after that, you are our champion. Thanks to this support, I did not get discouraged, I continued to train every day to reach my goal. I knew that even if I lost in the junior competitions, I would give a medal in the seniors. And so it happened.

- How do you reward yourself when you have a successful result in the competition?

- After winning the race, I take my family for a walk. I reward myself with their joy. I am very attached to my family.

- Eljan, what were your characteristics or characteristics that have not changed since your childhood?

- I'm late everywhere. I will be late again if I prepare two hours before my destination. I don't know how it happens. I'm always the last to come to training. As you can see, I am also late for the interview.

- What about eating?

- I hardly choose food. I don't like a single straw. In general, I am very good with food.

- How do you maintain your weight?

- I don't protect. I am losing my pre-race weight.

- So, you suffer twice before the competition.

- Yeah. In general, the life of an athlete is very difficult. Nothing is what it seems from the outside. Once our relative told my father that whenever I look, Eljan is traveling around the countries and enjoying himself. My father replied that you see his pictures on Instagram, and I see what he suffered until those pictures.

Aytaj Sahed