Sanan Suleymanov: "I see everyone as my rival" - INTERVIEW

19 October 2023 17:22
Sanan Suleymanov: "I see everyone as my rival" - INTERVIEW

Interview of Sanan Suleymanov (77 kg), Greco-Roman wrestler of the Azerbaijan national team, on website

- You lost in the finals of the last 2 World Championships - both in Oslo and in Belgrade. What are the main reasons for losing gold at the last moment?

- I faced very strong opponents in the finals of the World Championships. In Oslo, I met Roman Vlasov, a double winner of the Olympic Games. He had enough experience. It's true, no matter how experienced the opponents are, I think I'm not weaker than any of them. I have the power to overcome everyone. He won in Oslo simply because the opponent was more experienced than me. But I tired the opponent a lot. He left the mat with the help of his trainers. I made a lot of mistakes in the last World Championship. The opponent was Akzhol Makhmudov. He was also an experienced athlete. I am not afraid of any opponent. My main mistake there was that I fought according to the opponent's wrestling. I wrestled cautiously and tried to keep the opponent under pressure. I did not wrestle with the pace. This resulted in my defeat. I was very disappointed to miss the World Championship belt for the second time.

- For the first time, you will participate in the Summer Olympic Games to be held in Paris in 2024. How can you put it into words?

- Before that, I was one step away from getting a license for the Olympics. It was fated for Paris-2024. There is no excitement. There is plenty of time ahead of me to correct all my mistakes before the Games and go to the French capital fully prepared. The more mistakes an athlete wrestles, the more results he can achieve.

- Can Olympic Games be traumatic due to lack of experience and high expectations?

- I think that there is no need for special experience in the Olympic Games. The weather is kind of different. The fact that it is held every 4 years also has an effect on it. Expecting a medal from me does not create additional pressure. On the contrary, it is an additional motivation. No matter how much the fans expect a medal from me, they can't ask more of me. My biggest dream is to win a medal at the games.

- What can you say about your main competitors in Paris?

- There are no weak opponents in the Olympics. There are currently 5 licenses for the Games. The last are the competitors who took place in the World Championship. I see everyone as my rival. I don't look down on anyone, no matter who the opponent is. Currently, the participants are not completely clear. Among those with a license, my main competitors are Kyrgyz athlete Akzhol Mahmudov, Armenian athlete and Japanese Nao Kusaka. Each of these are very strong competitors.

- What are the aspects that you think you lack and will work on the most?

- The part I work on is the parter position. That's why I had a lot of problems as an athlete. I have a lot of pain during these situations because of my rib injuries. I've been suffering from this a lot lately. I healed my injuries while my opponents trained. I was also injured in the last World Championship. I can't exercise right now. Once fully recovered, I will work on all my mistakes and be fully ready for the games.

- What will be your main goal in Paris-2024?

- My biggest dream is to become an Olympic Champion. I really want it. But you can't get it with just asking. You have to suffer a lot for this. I do everything I can. Hopefully, I will achieve it.

Emin Aga