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Legendary Armenian gymnast Albert Azaryan marks 80th birthday

PanARMENIAN.Net - President of the Armenian Olympic Gymnastics Federation Albert Azaryan is marking his 80th birthday today.

"I receive congratulations all day long. I feel perfect, as if I am 40. I haven't received presents yet but I do not like presents, to tell the truth. There is nothing better than congratulations from relatives and friends," Azaryan said in a conversation with a PanARMENIAN.Net reporter.

"Today, I received a congratulation message from the President of Armenia. When I was 70, I received congratulation from late Prime Minister Andranik Margaryan. Then-President Robert Kocharian congratulated me on the 75th birthday. This year, President of the Olympic Committee Gagik Tsarukyan promised to organize an event dedicated to my jubilee on February 17. As to future plans, you know that our gymnasts did not participate in the Beijing Olympiad. Now, we are training sportsmen for the next Olympiad due in London in 2012," he said.

Albert Azaryan (born February 11, 1929 in Yerevan) is an Armenian artistic gymnast who competed internationally representing the Soviet Union. He is the 1956 and 1960 Olympic champion on the still rings. He was the first person to do one of the most famous exercises on the rings called the Iron Cross, Crucifix, or Azarian Cross in an international competition. He is the 1954 and 1958 World Champion on the rings and 1958 silver medalist on the horizontal bar.
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