Elif Jale, who is of Russian extraction, is currently preparing for the wrestling event, which will start on Aug. 5 in London, at a camp in Yalova, and says she is happy to be representing Turkey at the Games for the first time. Trained by İsmail Kosukoğlu and Yılmaz Arslan in the Yalova Anatolian High School gym hall, Yeşilırmak has stressed that she is confident of a good performance.
Noting that she wants to win a medal at the London Olympic Games, the national wrestler also said: “I am proud that I will represent Turkey for the first time. I am happy that I am participating in the Olympic Games on behalf of Turkey. I would not want to come back without a medal. I want to win a medal. I am not sure of the color of the medal, but I will take the stage for a gold medal. That’ll be a great honor for me. Particularly as there was no female wrestler that could be trained in the Turkish national squad, my trainers İsmail Kosukoğlu and Yılmaz Arslan allowed me to take this opportunity. The last camp was in Yalova; it was great. I’m thankful for everything.”
Trainer Kosukoğlu also believes that the 26-year-old wrestler will perform well at the Games. “We are participating in the female wrestling event at the Olympics for the first time. We will fly to Britain on Aug. 4 in the hope of getting good results with Elif Jale Yeşilırmak. We will hopefully come back to Turkey with good results.”
Trainer Arslan commented: “We have experienced firsts with Elif Jale. For the first time, we were ranked third place in the European tournament in Serbia. Now we are participating in the Olympics for the first time. I believe that if we are lucky, we will win a medal in the Games. We hold great hopes; Elif Jale can do this. The Turkish national squad has many talented wrestlers. I see this. And I even say that there will be a time when the women will be better than the men in wrestling. What is missing in our wrestling is a professional mentality. If they were all as professional as Elif Jale, the others would win medals. We held second place after Russia at the European Juniors’ Championship. Therefore, I can say that Russia is not better than us. The same happened in another tournament. We missed third place by two points. This means that our future is bright. Hopefully, it will be better.”