ACB Champion Yagshimuradov: about life, sports and mentors

ACB Champion Yagshimuradov: about life, sports and mentors

Aleksandr BAYRIYEV

ORIENT has already published an interview with our compatriot Dovletdzhan Yagshimuradov, Light Heavyweight Champion on ACB (Absolute Championship Berkut) in Mixed Martial Arts, who stayed for a while in Ashgabat on his way to Turkmenabad. Learning about this, we met with a Turkmen fighter and, having interviewed him (, agreed with him if we can join to his trip to home penates.

I risk to be considered as a homegrown philosopher, but I will repeat the idea, origin of which, due to the lack of boundaries in time and space, cannot be determined by any of the most mature historians: the most beautiful moments in life are returning home, native land…

“Wherever we are, whatever we reach, yet the most exciting and happy moments are the time when you return to your native land. When you touch your native land. When you visit the places where your childhood passed. Where family members and relatives, friends and teachers wait you. Because our life consists of small moments like this; and you yourself is a tiny particle of the Motherland. In addition, all that we do is a desire to receive the approval of the closest people and bring benefit to the Motherland …”

Dovletdzhan Yagshimuradov formulated these thoughts, in one way or another in conversation with me, who explained his arguments in a quiet, low voice. To some moments, even self-conscious. Sometimes I had a feeling that there was a doctor, a lawyer, an engineer in front of me – anyone, but not a mighty fighter who is highly valued by mentors and respected by competitors – competitors for the title of the strongest.

… Everyone who met on the way from the airport of Turkmenabad to his home welcomed him. Schoolchildren, returning from the exams, and graduates, preparing for admission to universities, and just random passers-by. All, seeing the famous compatriot, wanted to welcome him, shake hands…

“From the very childhood I dreamed that someday I will be able to raise our Turkmen Flag above all others,” Dovletdzhan says. “I was ready to coach myself 24 hours, at any cost, but I had to do it. You cannot even imagine how happy I am that I managed to achieve it; that I was able to serve our Motherland, to which I dedicated all my victories.”

“I, like anyone, regardless of the sphere of activity – athlete, artist, and scientist – have a period of activity decay, failures and crises. Then the thoughts of relatives, of the Motherland, of duty to the sacred land, where the ashes of our ancestors lie, make us pull ourselves together and with effort of will to get out of difficulties. Well, in happy moments, when you succeed in studying or gaining victory over a strong and worthy rival, then even more you think that you were able both to meet expectations of your relatives and friends, and to serve your native Turkmenistan.”

– How hard was the way to the title of champion?

– As of today, the last fight with a very worthy opponent – Batraz Agnayev – was the most difficult one because I had to fight with an untreated trauma.

– Really?! Before the start and during the fight you looked vigorous, set to win and moved very easily around the ring!

It cost me a lot of effort – I had no right to show my opponent my weakness. After all, it should be like this in life also – no matter how difficult or even painful, no one should ever see your unwillingness to achieve the goal. This is what life teaches us, as well as sports, which our national leader is developing very correctly and widely in Turkmenistan. Thus, he educates future generations, whom the destiny of our country will be entrusted after a while. It is the wisdom of the President of Turkmenistan to educate young people to be strong spiritually and physically…

– Tell me, Dovletdzhan, you had many mentors in your life – schoolteachers, physical training teacher, coaches in sports sections, and now even world-class coaches. Which of them, in your opinion, played a decisive role in your sports biography?

– You will be surprised, but there would be no my achievement, including the champion’s belt, if it were not for my … grandmother!

The fact is that when I wanted to enroll in the karate section, my father was strongly against it. I remember how, almost with tears in my eyes, I told my grandmother that I dream to become an athlete, but my father does not allow me. Then she, feeling my sincerity, said: “Go and do it! I let you to do sports!” We, Turkmen, respect elders. In addition, a word of the oldest one is sacred for us.

My father did not agree, but he could not contradict his mother – our national upbringing did not allow him to do this. Therefore, if it were not for my grandmother who let me to do sports, I would not be a champion today. And my dad, to be honest, it was only last year, when I was already on my way to the champion’s title, “officially” allowed me to do sports. Therefore, with all due respect to the mentors and coaches, I believe that my grandmother played the decisive fate in my sports biography.

… Hearing these words, I remembered how Dovletdzhan polite and courteously greeted his grandmother – in fact, the first mentor of the current formidable ACB Mixed Martial Arts Champion.