Sambo wrestlers held the first tournament in the new year. In the Minsk Sports Palace, they competed for medals of the Belarusian championship, and at the same time fought for places in the composition at the main international starts of the season — the European and World Championships.
Almost all the strongest came out on the carpets. The only exceptions were the long-term leaders of the national team, Andrei Kazusenok and Svetlana Timoshenko, who are still recovering from injuries.
According to the head coach of Belarus sambo wrestlers Yuri Rybak, in general, there were no sensations: the athletes on whom they were betting once again confirmed their high level: for example, Vladislav Burd, Alexander Koksha, Timofey Emelyanov, Anfisa Kopaeva became champions. young sambo wrestlers — Elena Kupavo, who became a champion in her weight category, Vadim Petruchik, who won silver, and others.
— The athletes fought well enough, so I am satisfied with the results, — the head coach of the national team sums up the results of the tournament. — During these competitions, we were able to see the condition the athletes are in, to select for the upcoming European and World Championships. These tournaments are scheduled for May and November. We understand that due to the coronavirus pandemic, the calendar may change, and we try not to get ahead of ourselves, nevertheless, we already imagine what lineup the team will perform at the main starts of the season.
Plans for the near future are much more clear. Very soon the team will go to the Anatoly Kharlampiev Memorial World Cup in Moscow. Then — for the Youths, Juniors and Adult European championships. If there is an opportunity to go to some other international tournaments, the sambists will certainly take advantage of this: after a long competitive pause caused by the pandemic, the athletes have more than enough desire to fight. And tomorrow our athletes will start a joint training camp with the Ukrainians. They did not have such a practice for almost a year — due to the spread of COVID-19, it was extremely difficult to organize such events. It is not easy to do this even now: in addition to difficulties with logistics, the safety of athletes must also be ensured.
— The epidemiological situation remains difficult, therefore, having arrived in Staiki, we will have to spend five days in quarantine. This is not a big problem. Still, we really need the planned training camp with the Ukrainians — this is a large amount of wrestling, sparring partners. We will involve not only the main team, but also the reserve — for young athletes this experience will be very useful.
Special attention is paid to work with the reserve. The head coach of the national team notes that now there are strong sambo schools in all regions — in Zhodino, Baranovichi, Brest, Mogilev and other cities. Nevertheless, the plans are to open new schools in which growing athletes will fight both according to the rules of judo and sambo.
— We want there to be no such clear division between these sports, as there is now. I remember how back in 2004 we held joint training sessions for sambists and judokas. The results at the international level were then much higher — with a large number of medals from the largest tournaments, both teams came. Therefore, we want to resume this practice.