Doha (QAT) March 27, 2013: Aspire Dome is buzzing with world class gymnasts ready to compete in the 6th FIG World Challenge Cup Artistic Gymnastics, which will kick off this afternoon.
But as Qatar is investing a lot to promote gymnastics in the country, six locals gymnasts are excited to take on to the podium, including the four males: Mahmoud Saadi, Nasser Al Hamad, Malik Al Yahri and Ahmed Dayyani and two female gymnasts: Shaden Wohdan and Al Jazi Al Habshi.
“We hope that we represent Qatar in the best way we can,” Mahmoud Saadi, a gold medalist in the 2011 Arab Games. “We think we are good enough to qualify for the finals and we hope that we reach this goal.”
Another home talent, Nasser Al Hamad who has reached the finals in Doha three times previously in the vault, is also looking forward for the competition. “The competition is very strong but I hope I can do my best and go to the finals,” said the 23 year-old.
Their coach, Eduard Grevorgyan, a former champion in the Soviet Union Team is aware of the toughness of the competition for his gymnasts who have to balance their athletic career with their education.
“The competition this year is very strong. If they (Qatari gymnasts) reach the final eight, I will be very satisfied,” said Grevorgyan.
Grevorgyan sees his gymnasts’ enrollment in universities is interfering with their full potential in excelling in their sport. “The problem is that they go to university. In other countries, they don’t go to university. They train morning, evening,” said the Armenian. “It is causing a big problem when they go to university everyday because they don’t have time to rest and they only train three hours a day.”
With London 2012 stars like Brazil’s Arthur Zanetti, Hungary’s Krisztian Berki and Romania’s Larisa Andrea participating in this event, the national gymnasts are thrilled to learn and compete against the Olympic champions.
By Mai Akkad, Media Committee