Beijing Olympics bronze medalist, two-time world and European champion, freestyle wrestler Georgy Ketoyev spoke about transferring to the Armenian wrestling team, the expectations for the Olympics and his future plans in a conversation with ANOC press service.
-Georgy, welcome to Armenia and thank you for accepting our invitation. Please, tell about the last 2-3 years we didn’t see you in the arena. What were you doing?
-I haven’t participated in tournaments for almost three years but I have trained every day. I can’t imagine my life without wrestling. It isn’t just a sport for me. I enjoy training, fighting and, of course, winning. It is, indeed, a great pleasure for me.
-Almost everyone believed in your victory during the Beijing Olympics. According to specialists, the problem was your weight? What is your opinion on the matter?
-No, it wasn’t. The weight loss couldn’t be the reason of the defeat. That victory simply wasn’t given to me by God. Now when I look back, it was possible to win the fight but I come to a conclusion again that God didn’t give it to me. This is sport and we put up with defeats over time.
-You have mainly competed in the 84kg weight class, how do you feel in the 97kg weight class?
-I feel fine. I think training hard I will be able to keep in shape.
-After a long pause you took part in a tournament and conquered an Olympic qualification and a gold medal. How did you manage it?
-Sincerely, I don’t know. There is a good wrestling school and conditions for achieving a good physical condition at the place where I train (Vladikavkaz). Besides, my experience helped much. I was sure I would qualify for the Olympics, but didn’t think I would win.
-Have you got acquainted with the wrestlers of the Armenian team? And have you already trained here?
-Of course, I don’t feel coldness here. I have known everyone in the team before joining it. We are members of the wrestling family and all of us feel a kinship with each other. I had been absent for 3 years but I was given such a reception as if I was at home. I haven’t trained yet, I will begin from training camps.
-Besides Armenia were other states interested in you?
-Yes, I have got some suggestions but I wanted to join the Armenian team because we both are from Christian nations and I feel at home here.
-What tournament are you going to participate in before the Olympics?
-I am going to take part in 2 tournaments, one in Italy, the other at the tournament after Stepan Sargsyan.
-What about you opponents who have already qualified for the Olympics?
-I have competed with all of them and I know them well.
-And what do you expect from the Rio Olympics?
- God willing, we will raise our flag in Rio (smiles)! I am going to Rio only after a medal. Every athlete who takes part in Olympic Games dreams of victory. I can’t say more and have never done it before. Even in 2007-2008 when they were saying to me, “You are the champion, we are confident”, I was silent. There is one truth here, the mat will show.
ANOC press service
6 athletes took part in the international tournament…
It is expected that the tournament will be attended by the teams of Georgia, Azerbaijan, Russia and Turkey
There is still one round before the end of the Cup
On April 15 Narek Abgaryan (52kg) and Vladimir Margaryan (69kg) will compete, too
Freestyle wrestlers of 50kg, 66kg, 74kg and 96kg weight classes…
The tournament will be held in Samsun, Turkey from April 7 to 18