The first title of the world champion for Azerbaijan was won by an Armenian

Armenians have always occupied a leading position in the social, cultural, business, and, of course, sports life of Azerbaijan. And although today the restriction of freedom of speech, anti-Armenian agitation at the government level prohibit any mention of the role of Armenians in the history of Azerbaijan, the pages of history are not so easy to erase. One of the brightest pages in the history of Azerbaijani sports was written by wrestler Artem Teryan.

In the spring of 1953, the entire sports Baku was excited by the news that came from Naples. The world championship in classical wrestling ended there, in which Soviet athletes took part for the first time.

Five of them climbed to the highest step of the podium. A representative of Azerbaijan, a wrestler from Kirovabad (now Ganja) Artem Teryan, was also awarded a gold medal.

His success was especially significant considering that he became the first Azerbaijani athlete to win the world title. Teryan’s name was well known in the sports world.

A year before the Neapolitan championship, Artem Teryan won a bronze medal at the Olympic Games in Helsinki. And in 1951 he succeeded in the “golden double”. He became the champion of the USSR in both freestyle and classical wrestling.

For eight years, Teryan’s Neapolitan success could not be repeated by any of the Azerbaijani athletes. And, finally, in 1961, another Armenian from Baku, Armais Sayadov, did this, winning the gold medal of the world champion in classical wrestling in Yokohama, writes

Artem Teryan was born in 1930 in Kirovabad to a family of people from the village of Banants. He early lost his father, who died on the fronts of the Great Patriotic War.

Artem started wrestling in 1945. At first, he became interested in the national Armenian wrestling Koch, then moved on to classical wrestling. His first coach was Andro Danielyan. After graduating from school, Artem Teryan entered the Baku Institute of Physical Education and moved to Baku.

In 1950, for the first time, he won the USSR championship in classical wrestling in the lightest weight category. In 1951 he became the champion of the USSR in both classical and freestyle wrestling.

In 1952, he joined the USSR national wrestling team at the Olympic Games in Helsinki and won the bronze medal in these competitions.

In 1953, he was a participant in the first classical style for Soviet wrestlers at the World Championship in Naples and became the winner of this tournament.

In the final, he beat the Olympic champion Imre Khodosh and became the world champion – the first holder of this high title in Azerbaijan and the first Armenian athlete to be awarded such an honorary title.

In 1955, after a fall from a motorcycle that broke his collarbone, he was forced to end his sports career and switch to coaching. In April 1970, Artem Teryan was the victim of domestic murder.

Armenian sportsmen representing Azerbaijan won resounding victories not only on the wrestling mat.

They brought fame to the neighboring republic in various sports, building not only their sports destiny but also the history of Azerbaijani sports.


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