Dinara Gimatova (AZE)

Profile - Achievements - Pictures

Birthday: 18 November 1986

Birthplace: Astrahan

Residence: Moscow/Novogorsk, Russia

Height: 170 cm

Weight: 45kg

Discipline: Individual

Club: Gymnastics Center of Novogorsk

Coach: Irina Viner

Started with RG: since 1992

By qualifying for the 2003 World Championships all-around final in 11th place, Dinara Gimatova of Azerbaijan became the first rhythmic gymnast from her country to earn a berth to the Olympic Games. Gimatova, who eventually finished eighth at the 2003 Worlds, is now preparing for next summer's Games in Athens.
Gimatova is already the most successful rhythmic gymnast to represent Azerbaijan, a country of nearly eight million people which in 1991 gained its indepedence from the former Soviet Union. Bordering the Caspian Sea, Azerbaijan is surrounded by Russia, Georgia, Armenia and Iran.
Azerbaijan is also the native country of 1990 artistic gymnastics World Cup all-around champion Valery Belenky, who represented the Soviet Union and, later, Germany. Belenky's other achievements included a gold medal on pommel horse at the 1991 and 1997 Worlds, the all-around bronze medal at the 1992 Olympics, and the 1990 World Cup all-around title.
Gimatova was born in Astrakhan, Russia, but her nationality is Azeri. Her parents were born in Baku, the capital of Azerbaijan. They, too, live in Astrakhan, and periodically visit Baku.
Gimatova, who has been competing on the Azerbaijan national team for two years, trains in Moscow under coach Irina Viner. Her training partners include reigning world all-around champion Alina Kabayeva and world all-around bronze medalist Irina Chaschina.
In the past two years Gimatova has earned consistent results on the international circuit. One of her most significant performances came during this past summer's World Cup competition in Baku. There, Gimatova won three medals - including the all-around bronze behind Kabayeva and Chaschina.
Gimatova, who enjoys reading and listening to music, says her favorite event is clubs. She says she is not the only rhythmic gymnast from Azerbaijan with talent, though. "I think that in forthcoming tournaments, each member of our team will make her presence felt," she told Azerbaijan's Olympic World.
She also cites the support of Mehriban Aliyeva, head of the Azerbaijan Gymnastics Federation. Aliyeva is the wife of Azerbaijan's Prime Minister Ilham Aliyev.
Gimatova's international presence should continue to help elevate the sport in Azerbaijan, which is preparing to host the 2004 World Cup of Baku (April 24-25) and the 2005 World Championship 2005, also in Baku.


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