Ara Poghosyan: Armenia never saw a basketball tournament of this level

Ara Poghosyan
Ara Poghosyan

Photo: Mediamax

On March 11-14, Yerevan will host a friendly international basketball tournament, where four teams from Armenia, Iran, Georgia and Russia will compete for the title.

Mediamax Sport talked with Vice President of the Armenian Basketball Federation Ara Poghosyan about the tournament and the active basketball life in Armenia.

-The basketball life in Armenia has become notably more active in recent time: the championship, the national team’s games, and now the international tournament. Can you tell us about the four participating teams?

-It will be a friendly tournament, dedicated to the 2800th anniversary of Yerevan. The plan is to make this a traditional competition. This year we will host Urartu (Yerevan), Hyundai (Tbilisi), Ararat (Tehran), and Gazprom (Moscow), all of them have strong players. They will arrive on March 10 and the games will be held on March 11-14 at Mika Sports Complex. It will be a round-robin competitions, all teams will play against each other.

Photo: Mediamax

-Why will the tournament be organized this year?

-Urartu came forward with the initiative, because the quarter-finals of the Armenian Basketball A League will be postponed. The team management decided to organize a friendly tournament. It will allow Urartu to see at what level they can play in international matches and get some game time. Also, it is an opportunity for the fans to watch international games.

Photo: Mediamax

-What do you expect from the tournament?

-It is a friendly, but all teams will want to give their best performance and win as many games as possible. We contacted the clubs who could find time in a busy schedule to come to Yerevan. The competition will be difficult, we will see high-level games. Armenia has never seen a club tournament of such level.

Photo: Mediamax

-Mr. Poghosyan, what can this kind of tournaments give to Armenia?

-Every game, either international or not, gives a new impetus to development of basketball. We have plans on organizing European competitions with teams in different age groups and this tournament will allow us to test our strength.

This is a good experience for the organizers, the players, and the coaches. Moreover, we will get people interested in basketball. We don’t want to weaken our efforts; on the contrary, we want to move forward with more force.

Photo: Mediamax

-Do you have other plans, apart from the upcoming tournament?

-We will play in the quarter-finals after the tournament. We also scheduled a “Stars Match” for April in Dilijan, where players from the Armenian championship will be involved.

We haven’t decided on the format yet: either teams from Yerevan will play against those from marzes, or the foreign teams will play against the Armenian. In June and July, the youth teams will take part in the European Championship and the Armenian national team will compete against Denmark. FIMA will take part in the European students’ games in July.

Gohar Nalbandyan talked to Ara Poghosyan


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