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ZiNTeR

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  • "ZiNTeR" is male
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Favourite Team: Dinamo, Krasnodar

Favourite Players: Mammadova, Makarova, Kabeshova

Location: Krasnodar, Russia

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1

Wednesday, December 2nd 2009, 12:29am

Happy Birthday Fairytale named Natalia! Interview with Mammadova.

This is the English version of the Natalia's big Interview, that was published in Russian beforeThat was translated English by alexsl76. The Original translation were publisher early in he's English blog about Russian Volleyball http://blogs.myspace.com/index.cfm?fusea…endId=505111708

gratitude's
We want to thanks Alexsl for excellent translation of the Natalia's big Interview in English.
Also we w
ant to thanks Natalia Once Again just for She's exists with us.
More there, we want to Thanks Vladislav Xodasevich for hi's outstanding administrative and creative works for this Interview become real.
And the Last by the list, but not by importance:

Quoted

2 december of 2009

Right now, 1:43 AM (GMT+3 Moscow Time)
We are the first in the, who congratulate You:
Happy Birthday Natalia!
Happy birthday Fairytale :)


Copy of this interview published on Official Dinamo Krasnodar Website: http://dinamokrasnodar.ru/publications/i…rview-mammadova
In the comment on Official Website U could post your congratulation's with birthdate :flower:
Press service of Women Volleball Club "Dinamo", Krasnodar

The Fairytale’s[1] Identity.


Q. Natalia, let’s start from family matters: where you were born; how did you got into volleyball; tell something about you family and etc. It would be kind of you autobiography.
A: I was born in Ukraine, in the city of Donetsk. All my relatives are still there. I started in volleyball accidentally: my older sister played volleyball. When I was in the third grade (about 10 years old) I joined her and stayed. Eventually I started to play professionally.

Q: Is you sister still playing on the professional level?
A: She played for some time. She is not playing now.

Q: What are her volleyball achievements?
A: She played in the Ukraine Superliga. But when it was time to choose between sport or education, she elected education.

Q: Are there any more athletes in you family?
A: Yes, I have a younger sister who plays volleyball. She is playing in Baku now.

Q: Is she a professional athlete?
A: She is not that good (with smiles). But she is trying to get better and get on a team.

Q: How about your parents: are they into any sports?
A: Not really.

Q: What do you parents do for living?
A: My mother already retired. Father passed away. Mom was an engineer on the railroad. Later, when we moved to Moscow, she quit her job and went with us. I was young, only 17 years old, when I came to play for Odintsovo. I played only one season and after than I left for Azerbaijan. That was many years ago.

Q: You started in Odintsovo when you were 17 years old. Did you play for any Ukrainian team before that?
A: No, I never played for any Ukrainian team. I did trained with one of them. Then off-season I went to Odintsovo, from there to Azerbaijan, where I settled down.

Azerbaijan Subscriptum.

Q: How you end up in Azerbaijan?
A: I do not know (laughing). They told me: “Give it a try.” I tried and stayed there. Probably there was an element of chance there (smiling).

Q: How Azerbaijan greeted you? It is a bit exotic country for us. What was it in you imagination? Was it close to the reality?
A: At that time my main goal was to start playing. I wanted to succeed in volleyball, to become a professional player and get people’s recognition. I did not have priority where to play. What mattered was the offer to play. I did not even think about that Azerbaijan was another country, a Muslim country. People there speak Russian, and they are “our people”. It was easy in this aspect: there was ne language barrier, no communication problem, there was no misunderstanding.

Q: BTW, there is a question to you from our web-site. You played in Azerbaijan, you played in Turkey. Both of then are Muslim countries with highly popular women volleyball. At the same time they have certain traditions regarding how women should behave. Is this somehow related? Did you feel any cultural differences?
A: No, there was absolutely no problem in Azerbaijan. It is a secular country, and women volleyball is very popular.

Q: Why women volleyball is so popular in Azerbaijan? It was popular during the Soviet time too. As an athlete who played there, can you explain why it is some popular?
A: It is hard for me to explain it. When I arrived there, there were some top level players, and we played pretty well together. Practically all the players from my team were on the National Team roaster too. So we spent all the time together. Our coach did everything for us to create the best environment to practice. That is why we improved a lot with the years. We had a lot of fans and we were very popular. We were surrounded by care and love from that time till present.

Q: Please tell a bit about the national championship: how many teams, what is the level?
A: You mean now or then?

Q: At that time. I’m assuming the championship had pretty high level and your team played in the final four…
A: Actually the situation was very different (with smiles). We did not participate in the National tournament. I played five years in Azerbaijan, but I never participated in the championship of Azerbaijan.

Q: So you never played in the final four?
A: As the team number one we played in the CEV Champions League. They won the Top Teams Cup before I came there. After that we played in the Champions League every year. We did not play in the national championship. Instead we participated in various invitationals, training camps, and friendly games with Russian a Turkey teams.

Mammadova and Makarova: the Ukraine Roots

Q: As I remember, you played for Ukrainian Junior Team, right?
A: Right.

Q: You played there with Makarova, right?
A: Yeah.

Q: How come all Ukraine players are playing outside of the country and did not stay to play in Ukraine?
A: At that time Ukraine did not offer much chance to play at the top level and grow individually. As a result all young players from that Junior National had to leave. Even experienced players that played abroad, settled there to play in the better leagues.

Q: There was not enough attention to volleyball?
A: Certainly there could be more support for volleyball. There was not enough financing; the National Team got only the minimum amount to have a training camp and to participate in tournaments. There was virtually no serious preparation work to the top competitions.

Makarova about Mammadova
Anna Makarova was on that Ukrainian Junior team with Natalia, and she is playing with her at Dynamo Krasnodar this season. We asked Anna to say few words about Natalia.

Q: Anna, how and when you met Natalia?
A: I met Natalia first time in the Ukrainian Junior Team’s training camp in Zaparozhie. We were 16 then. She was very promising at that time already.

Q: What do you remember about her (Natalia Skazka at that time)? What special quality you saw in her?
A: As I said, she definitely looked like a person with great volleyball future. You can feel that. But I’d like to emphasise more on her personal qualities. She was always happy, open and easy to communicate. Many years passed since then, but Natalia is still the same nice person.

Q: Are you friends?
A: We always had warm relationship. We played on the same team on the junior level, and now we are playing at the same Dynamo Krasnodar.


ZiNTeR

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Favourite Team: Dinamo, Krasnodar

Favourite Players: Mammadova, Makarova, Kabeshova

Location: Krasnodar, Russia

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2

Wednesday, December 2nd 2009, 12:30am

Continue

Forever and the Earth [2] (Road Warrior, where is you Home?)

Q: OK, let’s return to the Azerbaijan years. When did you get there?
A: Let me see… Was that 2001?

Q: And did you move to Turkey from there?
A: As I said, I played in Azerbaijan five seasons. After that I played little bit in Italy. The season ended too early that year, there was a three-month break until we’ll get busy playing for the National Team. I needed to play somewhere to stay in shape. That is why my team leased me for 2.5 month to Chieri, where I played till the end of the season.

Q: Interestingly enough, when you played there, you had shirt name Skazka…
A: That’s true (laughing). I used my former last name. But soon I was told to change it back ASAP.

Q: About the last name, there was a question from your fan: you changed your very romantic last name Skazka to kind of ordinary Mammadova. Azerbaijan media often name you as Mamedova. And now on the practice I heard girls are calling you “Skazka”. So what about all those names?
A: That is easy. My original name is Skazka. Mammadova is the name in my foreign passport. And this name is pronounced and written as “Mamedova” on Azeri.

Q: So we can use both Mammadova and Mamedova?
A: That’s right. This is more of the language nuances that are difficult to explain.

Q: Last year you played for Turk Telekom in Turkey. Can you compare the level of Turkey First League and Russian Superleague?
A: I cannot tell in details because I played only three games here. So far I would say that Russian tournament is stronger and more competitive compare with the Turkey. It is very tough to play here: not every player can make through it. The flights between games are very long and the winter is much colder that in Turkey, Europe or Ukraine.

Q: Later you have to fly to Khabarovsk…
A: Yeah, Russia is so big. It is impossible to predict the outcome of the competition: it is virtually impossible to foretell who would make to the final four and who would win the medals. All teams are very tough to beat. In Turkey, usually, there are always 2-3 teams that would compete for the top ranking.

Q: Last season, before several players left and before the economic crisis, we had the same situation when Dynamo Moscow, Zarechie and maybe Uralochka had the best chances to win it all.
A: That is true: three equally good teams. But now we have a good team here too …

Q: BTW, we cannot count out Lenigradka, right?
A: They are not that strong this season. They lost some players before the season start.

Q: Right. But last season they were among the contenders for the medals. After match with your team Lenigradka’s coach said that he would be very surprised if Dynamo Krasnodar does not win the second place.
A: Actually we got a very good team here. We have good strong individual players. We need only to build up the team play. And I think we have good chances to win something this season.

Q: Natalia, how often you visit home?
A: Are you talking about Donetsk?

Q: Oh, how interesting. Which place do you consider your hometown: Baku, Donetsk or Krasnodar?
A: All my relatives live in Donetsk (laughing). I go there once a year. The rest time my Mom, brother, sister come here to visit me. Regarding where is my home: it is where I live now.

Turkey Connection, Italian Rhythm.

Q: Let’s talk a bit more about Turkey. You just said that it is too early to compare the championships’ level. How about comparing the club’s infrastructure, how they take care about their players, do they provide any help with everydays life?
A: I can see some problems in this area here. But it is understandable, because the team just got promoted to Superleague. So there are a lot of new organizational things going on. Probably the team has not dealt with foreing players before, which have a set of specific problems such as visa, registration and etc. I would say there is a difference between Russia and Turkey in this aspect. It was much easier in Turkey which has very good relationship with Azerbaijan. Factually, from some perspective, they are almost one country: the passport of Azerbaijan is accepted everywhere in Turkey and there is no visa, registration problems.

Q: What do you think about fans in Turkey? They are legendary …
A: Right, they are quite active (laughing).

Q: What was fan base of you club there? Tell something about the arena and the attendance of the matches.
A: There were a lot of fans. The attendance was almost 100% every game.

Q: And how many people was that?
A: We play Turkey league games in a smaller arena, and Champions League games in larger arena. The smaller one seats 3,000 person. The attendance depends on which team we play. If we play the team at the 7-8 places there are some empty seats. The games against top four teams attract very big crowd.

Q: What do you think about Lang Ping, the coach of Turk Telekom? Is her style different from Omeltchenko’s?
A: I like her way to lead the practices, how prepares the team to the games. We had a lot of video to watch, we analyse the opponents after which we know how to cover every player from the other team. Here, in the new team, we have less video material. May this is because we are at the start of the season: so far we played only three rounds. And the team came together only recently and there was not enough time. I do not want to compare coaches: it is not very correct from my side.

Q: What do you think about total dominance of Italian teams in Euro Cups? Why teams from Russian league over last 6 years cannot score a win against them? What are the strongest sides of those Italians?
A: I believe Italian volleyball is universal. That means it is very good in all volleyball components. Their clubs play well in general. Italian girls are not as tall as Russian volleyballers, but they are fast and strong physically. They play very fast volleyball and score after lightning fast combinations. Their defence is great too. They always manage to put massive blocks against tall Russians that makes easier to defend the spikes. If you play fast, it is harder to block those fast attacks, and it is not easy to build up defensive plays against them.

Q: So would be right to say that fast paced plays are the major advantage of Italian volleyball?
A: Right. They are very fast. And general level of the volleyball culture there is very high: they have a lot of good players. They have also good schools that prepare very good players.

Q: And their league is at the top level, right?
A: Absolutely.

Q: Do you want to win the Azerbaijan League, maybe sometimes at the end of you career? Have you ever thought about returning to Azerbaijan, like Shevchenko did returning to Ukraine, to finish the career?
A: May be (laughing). But I have not thought about that yet. I do not plan to finish my career yet. No plans to go back now for sure: it is too early for me to end the career. At the end of my career - may be.

Q: Many years ago, in one of your TV interviews, you said that you do not plan to play in Turkey. But you end up playing there after all. What made you change the plans?
A: I did? I do not remember saying that. I was not very excited when my agent told about playing in Turkey. But, from the level of volleyball and money wise, at that time that was the best offer. Also the fact that team qualified to participate in Champions League was important. Those were the reasons I went to Turkey. Same is right why I chose Dynamo Krasnodar now: I had several offers.


ZiNTeR

Beginner

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Posts: 5

Favourite Team: Dinamo, Krasnodar

Favourite Players: Mammadova, Makarova, Kabeshova

Location: Krasnodar, Russia

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3

Wednesday, December 2nd 2009, 12:30am

last

A Fresh Start in Dynamo.

Q: Natalia, let’s talk about Krasnodar now. How long is your contract with Dynamo?
A: For now it is one year contract, till the next May.

Q: How did you settled in Krasnodar?
A: Everything is OK. I got a comfortable apartment, not far from the arena.

Q: Anything unusual about the Dynamo’s volleyball system? How is your adaptation going?
A: The hardest part is the way setter plays here, it is different from the scheme I used to. In Turkey the setter always plays backcourt. Here in Krasnodar, the setter covers the front court. I’m used to setter playing away from the net, whereas here the setter defends the zone close to the net. I have to remember this all the time.

Q: Your team has another high-level spiker Makarova. Does that help mentally? For example if you’re having problem attacking, Makarova can pick up the load. Do you ever thought about this?
A: Of course I know that if I’m having a bad evening there are players who can lead the team and take over the game. But I never think like this during the game. Professionals cannot have this kind of thoughts during the match. Maybe after the game it is OK, but during the game I concentrate on my part of the job no matter what happened.

Q: How your performance depends on emotions?
A: Sometimes I got too excited. But we are professionals and that means we have to overcome ourselves and our emotions to play our best. If we are behind during the game, we have to find the way to turn it around and carry our team to the victory.

Q: You participated in various leagues in Azerbaijan, Turkey, Italy, Switzerland, and now in Russia. Which one you like the most?
A: I cannot single out one or another country. In some countries I like the level of volleyball, and in some others I like the city and the country itself.

Q: And which country and city you like the most?
A: That would be Italy and Switzerland.

Q: Italy is not only a beautiful country, they have great volleyball too. It is the perfect combination, right?
A: Yeah, they have very high level competitions. I’d like to play and live there for some more seasons. Swiss is a nice place to live, but their League is not that strong. And regarding the Azerbaijan, I’m very comfortable there: it feels like home, you know everything, the team is very stable. Only a lot of veterans left already and they have many young players.

Gourmet Excurses.

Q: Natalia, you lived for some time in Turkey. What do you think about Turkish cuisine?
A: The supermarkets there have big varieties of different kind of food and all the kinds of fresh produces. The only problem I had was the difficulty finding certain type of food that I used to eat while I was back in Donetsk. Also some products tasted differently too. Here, in Krasnodar, everything is exactly the same as back in my childhood.

Q: What kind of food you’re talking about?
A: I’m talking about the dairy products, ham, cheese. The ham and sausages taste very differently from what I was used back home. Also I could to find herrings and dill that I like very much. Here I can get all the food I’m used since the childhood, for example, buckwheat and again all the variety of the diary products.

Q: Have you tried hookah?
A: No. It is not my kind of things. And it is not good for athletes too.

Miscellaneous Issues.

Q: Natalia, what is your version of World All Star team?
A: Oh my (laughing). That is a difficult question. I never thought about that.

Q: It is not me. That’s a question from you fans. Here is another question: what do you think about football? Are you a fan of any team?
A: No, I do not follow football right now.

Q: What do you do in you spare time?
A: I’d like to have some walk, do some readings, go to a beauty salon to make myself pretty. Only I do not have much free time and they go by too fast.

Q: About the beauty, one of websites has a pool who is the prettiest girl in Superleague. What do you think about the pool?
A: I’m all for it. If fans like to vote, why not.

Q: Can you promote anybody from Dynamo? Say somebody except yourselves?
A: Actually I do not consider myself a beauty. But I’m a nice girl (smiling).

Q: So anybody from the team?
A: Merkulova (after some thought).

Q: If you have not played volleyball, what would you do for living? What would you life be like?
A: I suppose I’ll get some serious profession.

Q: Any preferences?
A: It would be interesting to try myself in interior design or landscaping. I would give that a shot. And I’d get married sooner and get a child.

Q: BTW, are you married?
A: Not yet, not for now (smiling shyly).

Q: What do you think about the internet? Do you surf a lot?
A: Internet is very important for me. I’m here by myself. So the internet is the way to communicate with my family and friends. But I do not spend the whole day surfing. I do get some videos, talk over Skype, check some sites and follow the Turkey and Italian Leagues. Basically everything I’m interested in.

Q: Any thought about creating a personal site?
A: If anybody would take over that, I’m totally for it. But it would be hard for me to be there all the time to answer the questions.

Q: How about to follow the Kabeshova’s example: to start blogging on the LiveJournal?
A: I do not know (laughing). I’ll talk with her.

Q: Have you met your fans in face? I know there are people that are devoted fans of yours. Did you meet them?
A: I do not have personal contacts with those fans. But I constantly receive their emails; they post on my odnoklassniki page and ask questions. There is one person from Turkey who always writes to me. Maybe there are even more people on the Facebook, but I have not visited that social network for a while. Yes, there are fans, but I have not talked with them in person.

Q: One more question. Why there were not enough first-tempo attacks in the match with Lenigradka?
A: Honestly, I do not know. Those are setter’s choices or coach’s game plan. From my side, I would say if we explored the fast attack more, the game might went differently.

Q: OK, that’s all we have. Natalia, great thanks for the interview.
A: Thank you too.





[font='&quot'][1][/font] Natalia’s Ukrainian last name is Skazka. The English translation is Fairytale. Very romantic name for a girl (Volleyball Al).

[font='&quot'][2][/font] This is humorous reference to famous 1984 radio dramatization of Ray Bradbury.

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