Wednesday evening HC CSKA woman’s team held an open for fans training. There were several dozen of those wishing to watch HC CSKA handball players practice.
The format of the meeting at Dinamo sport centre was as follows: 1-hour training under the eyes of supporters from the rostrum, then team answers to fans’ questions and after that free communication with the players, autograph and photo session.
Birthday greetings to Julia Kozachenko preceded the handball training. Don’t be frightened, you didn’t miss a transfer. But slowly you can get used to the new second name of left wing Markova. By the way, Julia didn’t take part in the workout, she was training individually.
Her friend and position colleague Polina Gorshkova is outside the group. The player is recovering after the operation on the throwing shoulder.But the injury didn’t prevent vice-champion of the Olympic Games in Tokyo from participating as a DJ and fulfilling music orders of her teammates, turning on music tracks during warming up.
— Polina is still recovering. The preliminary rehabilitation period will last till November. We won’t speed up her return. She is going through physiotherapy now, developing the hand.
Julia’s back injury has worsened. She is slowly training by herself. We can’t give the exact dates of her return.
Left wing issue is especially acute, particular ahead of the Spartakiad. Nataliya Kotina is Belorusian and has no right to play.
So, we had to ask Elena Rabazulkina to come back (smiling). She was happy hearing from me and agreed to help without hesitating. She had time to miss handball. Therefore, we expect her and Tanya Zakharova from HC Luch-RGSU to play as left wings at the Spartakiad with the Moscow team, — shared her thoughts on team’s line-up with Handballfast journalist the head coach Olga Akopyan.
Tatyana Zakharova, an already mentioned left wing of HC Luch-RGSU, and HC CSKA captain Karina Sabirova didn’t participate in handball part of the open training. According to Olga Akopyan, it’s not about serious injuries. In the near future girls will be in the ranks.
It’s amazing that in the new season the HC CSKA will be headed by an entirely female coaching staff. Even a couple of years ago we literally noted each test of strength of female specialists in the Super League and now the Russian vice-champions staff is full complement of women. As is well known, Olga Akopyan will be assisted by a goalkeepers’ preparation specialist Lyubov Korotnyovaand a general physical training coach Elena Efimova.
— Recently, I drew my attention to that fact and was surprised (laughing). It’s really uncommon. We are not creating matriarchy in no case. We have male medical staff for balance (doctor Vladislav Dolgatchyov and massage therapist Yury Plotnikov — Handballfast). We work closely. It seems, that noone focuses particular attention on it. Nobody is joking about it in the team.
— Have the disputes over the team’s fate between the head coach and the CEO hardened?
— We have always discussed and keep discussing the matches, training process with Eduard ( Eduard Akopyan — the HC CSKA CEO — Handballfast). We are having handball on breakfast, dinner and supper (smiling). My appointment as head coach has in no way changed the situation, — said Akopyan.
After specifically handball part of the open training Zakharova, Julia Bayeva and Julia Krupennikova left the stadium. The HC CSKA representatives pointed that these players train together with CSKA team only during preparing to the Spartakiad, while they should start the Super League season as part of the HC Luch-RGSU team.
Team communication with supporters started with wishes from fan-sector. The main accent is a wish to win three trophies at the end of season. Well, after such order they will have to wage a serious fight for a victory in the Super League, Supercup and Russian Cup.
By the way, the meeting was held by Maria Bolotko, one of Handballfast observers and famous social group Near Handball admin. She was entrusted this role as a neutral and well-known in handball person.
Team’s captain Sabirova and skilled Ekaterina Ilyina thanked fans for the support and assured that the team will not have problems with motivation even in the current conditions of European competitions absence.
The main attention of supporters was focused on team’s newcomers. Kira Trusova, Natalya Kotina, Albina Murzalieva and Anastasiya Kulak told about excellent atmosphere in the team with one voice. Many have noticed strong support of fans on the stands, while observing HC CSKA last season.
Polina Gorshkova pointed out discipline to the question of a young handball player about main qualities of the athlete, not just on the court, but outside it as well. And Olga Akopyan while answering the question about people, who influenced her as a coach, besides her work experience with Jan Leslie and Florentin Pera, recalled mentoring of Levon Akopyan, Evgeny Trefilov, Victor Ryabikh, Vyacheslav Kirilenko.
Fans also expressed wishes to the administrative staff of the club: to see the players wearing a signature red-blue color form, to hold matches not only in a new Dinamo stadium, but also on CSKA playground. Concerning away matches, all assistance in arrangements for fans transfer is appreciated.
The club’s representatives assured that the new season team’s form will be presented very soon, and CSKA fans are expected to be pleasantly surprised with it. Other requests are heard and will be implemented as far as possible.
By the end of the question-answer for of the meeting, the supporters came down to the sports area where they were able to communicate personally with the players and coaches, take autographs and make photos.
A lot of attention was paid to Natalya Chigirinova, who returned to the team after childbirth in March.
— I missed the game very much and was looking to come back to handball eventually. Finally, running and general physical training is over (laughing). I feel physically well now. There is only one thing left — to put my head on its proper place, and everything would be great! The missed last season allowed me to feel lack of handball. I am ready to plunge into the work with new forces.
— What do you receive with these meetings as a player? A sort of emotional charge?
— I get special emotions. I feel a huge wave of support, particularly when I saw a video with the brightest moments of the season. I even shed a tear, — told Chigirinova.
Photo: press services of CH CSKA
Authors: Sergey Bogodukhov, M.Lyubimova