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Opinions & Interviews

7 Sep 2017

Lukashenko: Athletes feel confident when well-prepared

Lukashenko: Athletes feel confident when well-prepared

MINSK, 7 September (BelTA) - Athletes feel confident when they are ready to compete, Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko said at the meeting of the Executive Committee of the National Olympic Committee (NOC) of Belarus held on 7 September to discuss the preparations for the international sport forum, BelTA has learned.

The head of state noted that he has to hear out excuses after every unsuccessful performance. “Don’t you think we pay too much attention to the athlete’s anxiety during the competitions? Athletes feel less nervous when well-prepared,” said the president.

Alexander Lukashenko drew the attention of Sports Minister Alexander Shamko to the need to focus on the results of athletes in 2018 with a view to spotting those who can perform well at the 2019 European Games. “If these athletes achieve nothing next year, there will be no one to rely on in 2019,” the head of state said.

The president also reminded the Sports Minister and Head of the Belarusian Athletics Federation Vadim Devyatovsky of the poor performance of the national team at the IAAF World Championships in London 2017 and the relegation from the European Athletics Team Championships Super League. “There can be no excuses when the head of the sport federation sends athletes who cannot show even the results they usually produce in practice,” Alexander Lukashenko said.

The head of state stressed that the country has money for sport but it will be given only if there are results.

The president did not welcome the idea of developing a selected group of sports. “It is the wrong approach. We need Olympic medals and we also need to support every sport. Priority attention should be paid to the sports that bring results at the Games. Other sports should be supported as well, especially if they are believed to produce good results,” he said. Alexander Lukashenko cited Vladislav Goncharov’s success at the 2016 Rio Olympics as an example of the current close attention to the trampoline sport in the country.

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