While in other countries everyone wants to be a football player, in Georgia wrestling is the number one choice. The professional developement of the sport and the athletes started only in 2004 there. 14 years is what they needed to improve to such a level, that now, at the World Wrestling Championships in Budapest, we are wittnessing the march of the Georgian family with the support of their fanatic doctor and their priest.
According to the selection’s doctor, Zurab Kakhabrishvili there is no surprise in where they are now and what they have achieved so far in wrestling.
„This sport is an ancient tradition for us, it is even in our DNA! The professional wrestlers have earned a great respect in Georgia, they have a lot of fans. The whole nation supports them, but most importantly their family as well.”
And they need this support a lot, as they are away from home for months to become the bests of the world.
„We are on our way since months. Maybe we can return home for Christmas. But this is the meaning of our lifes, and we are here for each other.”
Everyone sees that they work together as a real team. Not only the coaches, but the doctor and the priest of the selection underlined how important is this strong connection that is between them. To that question why is it so important to have their priest at every competition, Zurab Khakabrishvili gave the explanation:
The ortodox religion requires from the athletes, and the athletes also need, to pray before every match they have.
„This is my obligation. I am here to support them. In a point of view, I am representing their families” – says the priest who travels together with the team and has his second world championships in Budapest with the athletes.
„Many of them were christened by me. Moreover, I am the godfather of some of their children as well.”