On November 29-30, the Irina Viner-Usmanova Gymnastics Palace will host the International Tournament in Freestyle and Greco-Roman Wrestling (Alrosa Cup). President of the Russian Wrestling Federation Mikhail Mamiashvili believes that the composition of the upcoming Alrosa Cup is quite interesting, will the competitions will be attended by athletes from 12 countries: "All our friends and associates whom we invited to the tournament will be there. There will be strongest Iranians, Cubans, the U.S. will be presented by a very strong team, the team from Japan will be there, the composition is quite interesting. Mikhail Mamiashvili, speaking with Vestnik Kavkaza, said that one of Russia's main competitors at the Alrosa Cup will be the Azerbaijani team.
- Mikhail Gerazievich, how do you assess the level of the Azerbaijani team taking part at the Alrosa Cup?
- It includes the strongest wrestlers of the Azerbaijani team. Azerbaijan has its own traditions, a certain wrestling brand. Of course, their particiaption causes additional interest in the tournament. I am grateful to my Azerbaijani colleagues, the leadership of the federation, who work very dynamically. The team selection has been underway there, but they considered it impossible not to participate in our tournament. We will have an exciting and very essential meeting.
- What is the relationship between the Russian and Azerbaijani teams?
- We have long-lasting contacts. Moreover, the Azerbaijani team is one of the main competitors of the Russian team, and if I start listing the outstanding names and surnames of Azerbaijani wrestlers, it will take a very long time. Most importantly, they do not stop, they develop their skills.
Wrestling is an Olympic sport that declares the development of such qualities as tremendous strength of body, technical ability, tactical and strategic skills. Moreover, it is extremely important that in wrestling a person uses force and skills according to strictly regulated rules from the first steps on the carpet. This is the most important thing, it is what makes a person strong and noble.
- Which member of the Russian team is the most promising wrestler at this Alrosa Cup?
- I think this is two-time Olympic champion Roman Vlasov. But we will all see everything at the tournament.
- What are the plans for the end of the tournament?
- Extending traditional Moscow hospitality so that each of the participants, as well as specialists, doctors, massage therapists, every guest, leaves with a great desire to return to Moscow again. In whatever capacity: rival wrestler, guest, just a tourist. In any case, they are our brothers, they are welcomed in Moscow in any capacity. As long as they want it.
- Recently, the WADA Compliance Review Committee recommended the organization’s Executive Committee to reapply sanctions on Russian sports, in particular, to bar Russian athletes from taking part in international competitions for a four-year period the national flag and prohibit hosting international tournaments in the territory of Russia. What do you think about it?
- This is a cruel recommendation, and I think that it does not quite correspond to the realities of RUSADA. I do not think that this is the right position and the right message for resolving global issues, one of which is anti-doping policy. I assert only what I know well. And I know what thoughtful and painstaking work is being done to scale up the inadmissibility of doping, starting from athletes who take their first steps on the carpet to venerable athletes, specialists, coaches and doctors who work with teams. The very serious work has been done. In order not to notice it, one must be either blind or mistaken, which is human nature. I think that the experts working on this issue will be able to prove that we are aware of the existing problems and working to solve them, including in collaboration with the international community.
- Do you expect any problems at the Tokyo Olympics?
- I hope there will be no problems.