Today.Az » Sports » Baku Grand Slam gathers world-class judokas [PHOTO]
06 November 2022 [15:59] - Today.Az
By Laman Ismayilova
The Baku Grand Slam has started at the Heydar Aliyev Sports Palace, Azernews reports.
Around 366 world-class judokas from 61 countries are taking part in the tournament.
Minister of Youth and Sports Farid Gayibov greeted the athletes and delegations visiting the country. He named judo one of the most popular sports in Azerbaijan.
"Judo is a popular sport in the country. Azerbaijan has hosted major international tournaments many times. The World Judo Championship was held in our country, and the Grand Slam is traditionally organized every year. We have Olympic and European champions. As a result of President Ilham Aliyev's special attention, judo is developing rapidly in Azerbaijan," the minister said.
Vice-president of the Azerbaijan Judo Federation Rovshan Rustamov said that he was very pleased to greet the participants in the tournament.
"Over the past years, Azerbaijani judo fighters have won multiple medals at large-scale tournaments in different countries and have always done their best to hold the flag of our country high. Thanks to President Ilham Aliyev's special attention and care, Azerbaijan has turned into one of the world's leading judo countries," said Rustamov.
President of the European Judo Union (EJU) Laszlo Toth greeted all the participants on behalf of the head of the International Judo Federation and thanked the EJU for their contribution to the organization of the event.
Then the anthems of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the International Judo Federation were played.
At the end of the opening ceremony, a dance called "50th anniversary of judo in Azerbaijan" was performed on the stage.
Meanwhile, the Azerbaijani team successfully started the Baku Grand Slam.
Balabay Agayev (60 kg) won the gold medal for the Azerbaijani team while Karamat Huseynov and Orkhan Safarov (both 66 kg) won the bronze medals on the first day of the tournament.