World Boxing Championship ended in Doha, Qatar, which was qualifying for the 2016 Summer Olympics. Neither of three boxers representing Armenia could win a ticket. Till Rio 2016 there are still 2 qualifiers, one in Baku and the other in Istanbul. Chances and hopes of winning a ticket are reducing. The ANOC reporter tried to get answers to some alarming questions and met the president of Boxing Federation of Armenia; Arthur Gevorgyan recently arrived from Doha.
Mr. Gevorgyan, as a president of Boxing Federation of Armenia, please, summarize the World Boxing Championship in Doha.
We had tree participants, one of them had left for Doha by white card. By my own decision the card was given to Hovhannes Bachkov, who brilliantly introduced himself in Doha. As a specialist I am confident that this athlete is really strong. He lost to the World double champion with a score of 2:1; it means that Bachkov has big potential. The difference between two strong athletes can be very slight, it’s impossible to win the World double champion having a great privilege over him. The rest is destiny and “mafia”. If we were a part of that mafia Bachkov would become the World champion. We honestly conceded. But I can say with confidence that Hovhannes Bachkov is one of the leaders in this weight category. Neither the Russian nor the Azerbaijani athletes could win him if he met them in case of prevailing on the Cuban. But I doubted if we could overcome obstacles with those athletes as there are might forces standing behind them.
Aram Avagyan is a hard working athlete. He lost 10 kg during. We encouraged him and he participated in Baku’s European Games, then at the European Championship he won the bronze medal, in a month he came out at the World Championship. People even in 10 years can’t lose 10 kg, but this guy loses weight every month. I didn’t have expectations of him, I know he is an athlete of iron will but he is exhausted. Of course it’s upsetting that he lost to a weaker boxer, but everything has its explanation.
Koryun Soghomonyan simply didn’t justified himself. He was an amazing boxer in junior group but he doesn’t manage in the upper age group. It’s typical to our nation, when we have achievements at early age, it spoils our qualities. In this weight category we have another athlete Narek Abgaryan. Probably Narek will have opportunity to obtain Olympics’ ticket in this weight category.
May we say that referees again have left the Armenian boxers without tickets?
I don’t mean that we have won, but we have lost the victory. In case of Bachkov the victory could be given to us. The hall split into two parts. The half of spectators thought that the winner would be our athlete and the others were rooting for the Cuban. It was normal that the referees sympathized with the champion. They have known him for years. People think differently, one thinks that the athlete should be given a chance as he could challenge the champion. In our case the main roll plays referee’s sympathy which this time wasn’t on our side. We should be either ready for the rules of this game or be honest in our expectations. I was present at Euro Youth Boxing Championships. The referee, were absolutely fair till the moment when Olympic tickets and medals were given.
What do you think? What steps should be taken?
Everything is deeper as it seems. We need to strengthen. We must have such authority and might to get medals for our won fights, nothing else. Otherwise we will stay in the same place. We have dismissed much we even don’t have referees of international class. Only recently we have taken some steps, but it should have been done earlier. There was no need to invent something new. The federation should take care of athletes, coaches and referees, but it’s impossible to implement by our restricted resources. At present we try to do our best but unfortunately we don’t manage.
Mr. Gevorgyan, there are still two qualifying tournaments before Rio 2016 one in Baku, and the other in Istanbul. Will our boxers compete there?
Probably we won’t participate in Baku’s tournament, as the experience has shown that the tickets conquerors have been already determined in a host country.
But I don’t need losers. If there is a potential boxer we will send him, we are going to take part in Istanbul’s tournament but the participants are unknown. Since the sport has become a politics the superpowers show their muscles through it. Sport has become politics thanks to reporters who began to calculate conquered medals 100 ago.
What plans and programs do you have till the end of the year?
After Youth Boxing Championship there will be changes among the couches as well as the athletes. Maybe we’ll organize a tournament at the end of the year for formation of national team of 2016. During the tournament the national team athletes will be qualified and the new athletes will be given an opportunity.
ANOC's Media Section
Edit:The white card of the national boxing team of Armenia has been got thanks to the efforts of ANOC president GagilkTsarukyan.
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The tournament was held on February 5-9
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