National Olympic Committee of the Republic of Belarus
Aliaksandr Bahdanovich

Five-year-old Aliaksandr was disappointed in his younger brother firstly because he waited for a pretty sister. But in a couple of months he said to his mother: "I always wanted to have such brother!". The elder brother is ready to repeat these words even today. As if he had a sister, he would hardly find out the taste of the Olympic triumph.

It was hard to believe in their future career firstly because there was no any rowing club in their native village Elizovo. But Andrei and Aliaksandr were destined to become outstanding athletes.

Nearest sports centre was situated in 30 km from their native village. But Lyudmila Bahdanovich, mother of athletes, decided to follow coaches’ advice and let her thirteen-year-old son Alexander go to a sports centre and then move to a sports hostel in Bobruisk. Soon after Alexander managed to justify hopes of his parents and numerous specialists assured in his talent.

When elder brother began to show good results, coaches decided to suggest Andrei Bahdanovich to follow his brother’s example and try himself in Rowing. By that time, they had seen Andrew at the competitions and they were impressed by his performances.

However, Andrei hadn’t thought about the Olympic Games some years ago. But after he got the second and the third prize at the Junior World Championship-2005 on his own, the senior couch of the CIS Olympic team Mr. Nikolai Banko suggested Aliaksandr to train together with Andrei.

The final training camp in Czech Republic before the Olympic Games in Beijing showed that brothers were on the right way. They won the qualification and soon understood that they could compete for the first prize. Due to their diligence and devotion to main purpose, brothers made really great result.

They became gold medalists in 500m distance. The brothers were really happy but it was extremely difficult to cope with emotions. As Aliaksandr and Andrei were unbelievably exited and couldn’t rest enough, they didn’t win the next race. But they do hope to set off this loss in London.


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