12 Greatest Swimming Players in Azerbaijan

Marjan Sokolovski

Azerbaijan is a country that is known for its amazing swimming athletes. From world-class swimmers to Olympic champions, Azerbaijan has a rich history of producing some of the best swimmers in the world.

Over the years, Azerbaijan has produced some of the greatest swimmers in the world, including some of the most decorated Olympians in swimming. From gold medalists to world record holders, Azerbaijan has a long list of talented swimmers who have made a mark in the sport.

We will take a look at some of the best swimmers that Azerbaijan has to offer.

1. Boris Kirillov

Boris Kirillov is a competitive swimmer from Azerbaijan. He has achieved considerable success in the sport, particularly at the 2016 Summer Olympics. At the 2016 Summer Olympics, Boris Kirillov competed in the men’s 200 metre backstroke event.

This event is an individual medley race in which competitors complete two lengths of the swimming pool, alternating between the backstroke and the butterfly stroke.

Boris Kirillov’s performance in the event was commendable, ultimately placing him amongst the top competitors in the world. His success is a testament to his dedication and hard work and is a source of pride for Azerbaijan.

2. Mariam Sheikhalizadeh

Maryam Sheikhalizadeh is an impressive athlete hailing from both Iran and Azerbaijan, where she is a member of the National Swimming Team of the Republic of Azerbaijan.

Her athletic prowess has earned her a spot on the 2020 Summer Olympics roster, as she has achieved the qualifying time for the Women’s 100 m butterfly. This marks a major accomplishment for Maryam and is a testament to her dedication to her sport.

She is sure to make her nation proud during the Games, and will likely be a great source of inspiration for other aspiring athletes in Azerbaijan and beyond.

3. Fatima Alkaramova

Fatima Alkaramova is an Azerbaijani swimmer who made a name for herself when she participated in the 2016 Summer Olympics. She competed in the women’s 100 metre freestyle event, making her the first Azerbaijani swimmer to do so in the Olympics.

Despite not winning a medal, Fatima’s performance was praised by many, and she was celebrated as a hero in her home nation. Fatima trained hard for her event, spending long hours in the pool and in the gym.

She had to overcome many obstacles in order to make it to the Olympics, including financial constraints and a lack of adequate training facilities.

Thanks to her dedication and determination, however, she was able to make it to the competition and perform to the best of her ability. The 100 metre freestyle event is a very difficult event, requiring swimmers to be strong, fast and have excellent technique.

Fatima had all of these attributes, and she put her best foot forward during the competition.

Although she did not win a medal, she was still able to achieve a very respectable result and make her nation proud. Fatima’s achievement at the Olympics was a major milestone in Azerbaijani swimming, and she has since become a role model for aspiring swimmers in her country.

Her story is truly inspiring, and it shows that hard work and dedication can overcome any obstacle.

4. Oksana Hatamkhanova

Oksana Hatamkhanova is a successful athlete from Ukraine who now competes for Azerbaijan in the Olympics. She earned a wild card to compete in both the 2008 and 2012 Olympic games, qualifying her to represent Azerbaijan in the swimming events.

In the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Hatamkhanova swam in the 100m breaststroke event, but she failed to make it to the semifinals and finished 46th overall.

Despite not making it to the semifinals in Beijing, she continues to represent Azerbaijan in the Olympic games, demonstrating her tenacity and competitive spirit.

5. Tural Abbasov

Tural Abbasov is an Azerbaijani swimmer who specializes in sprint freestyle events. He has competed in several international competitions, including the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, China.

At the Olympics, Abbasov had a strong showing, finishing in the top 80 swimmers in the 50 m freestyle.

His performance in the event was a great accomplishment for Azerbaijan, as it showcased the talent of one of their athletes on the world stage. Abbasov is an experienced swimmer who has competed in numerous competitions throughout his career.

He has also set several national records in the 50 m freestyle and has won several medals at international competitions.

His hard work and dedication to swimming have earned him recognition as one of Azerbaijan’s top swimmers. Abbasov is an inspiration to many aspiring swimmers in Azerbaijan. He has shown that with hard work and dedication, anyone can achieve their dreams.

His Olympic performance in 2008 was a testament to this, as he was able to rise to the challenge and compete alongside some of the world’s best swimmers. He is an example of what can be achieved when one puts in the necessary effort and dedication.

6. Sergey Dyachkov

Sergey Dyachkov is a retired Azerbaijani swimmer who was known for his skills in sprint freestyle events. He earned his place at the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens through a Universality place from FINA, which is an international governing body for aquatic sports.

This place is awarded to athletes from countries with a lower number of Olympic athletes. In order to qualify, Dyachkov had to meet the entry time of 57.73. As a result, he was able to compete at the 2004 Summer Olympics and was one of the few Azerbaijani athletes to do so.

Dyachkov’s hard work and dedication to his sport have been widely recognized, and his legacy continues to inspire aspiring swimmers from Azerbaijan today.

7. Emin Guliyev

Emin Aleksandr Guliyev is a former Azerbaijani swimmer who specialized in sprint freestyle events. He was an important part of Azerbaijan’s impressive presence in the Olympic Games since the nation’s official debut after separating from the former Soviet Union in 1996.

Guliyev was one of the first athletes to represent Azerbaijan in the Olympics and has competed in two Olympic Games since then. Guliyev was a successful swimmer, having achieved a variety of impressive results in his events.

He competed in different freestyle events, ranging from the 50m freestyle to the 400m freestyle. Guliyev was also a part of Azerbaijan’s relay teams, helping the nation to achieve even greater success in the Olympic Games.

His dedication and hard work have been an inspiration to the Azerbaijani Olympic team for many years.

8. Alisa Khaleyeva

Alisa Yuzy Khaleyeva is an Azerbaijani athlete who had a successful career as a swimmer specializing in sprint freestyle events. She represented Azerbaijan at the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney, where she competed in the women’s 50 m freestyle.

Khaleyeva received a ticket from the FINA (Fédération internationale de natation, the international governing body of aquatic sports) under their Universality program, which enabled her to compete despite having an entry time of 28.00.

This program is designed to give athletes from countries with limited swimming resources the opportunity to compete on the world stage.

Khaleyeva’s Olympic experience marks a milestone in her career, as it was the first time that Azerbaijan was represented in an Olympic swimming event.

9. Maksym Shemberev

Maksym Shemberev is an accomplished swimmer who is proud to represent both Ukraine and Azerbaijan. He was born in Ukraine and began swimming at a young age. Since then, he has gone on to become one of the most successful swimmers in the history of both countries.

Shemberev has won several international medals, including gold medals at the European Championships in 2018 and 2019. He has also earned multiple titles at the European Junior Championships and has represented both Ukraine and Azerbaijan in the Olympic Games.

Shemberev is a role model for swimmers of all ages, and his success is a testament to the hard work and dedication he has put into his sport.

10. Vali Israfilov

Vali Israfilov is an accomplished Azerbaijani paralympic swimmer. He has been competing as a paralympic athlete since 2018 and has achieved numerous successes in the sport.

At the 2020 Summer Paralympics, Israfilov achieved a remarkable accomplishment by winning a gold medal in the 100 metre breaststroke SB12 event.

This event is part of the swimming events that are held in Paralympic competitions and is one of the most prestigious achievements a paralympic athlete can attain. Israfilov’s gold medal victory is a testament to his hard work and dedication to the sport.

He has shown a remarkable amount of determination and courage in his athletic career and is an inspiration to other aspiring paralympic athletes.

His gold medal win is a testament to his drive and ambition and is a reminder that anything is possible with hard work and dedication.

11. Raman Salei

Raman Sergeevich Salei is an inspirational figure in the Paralympic world. He was born in Azerbaijan but has Belarusian heritage.

He is a Paralympic swimmer, and has represented Azerbaijan in two Paralympic Games – the 2016 Summer Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, and the 2020 Summer Paralympic Games in Tokyo.

At these Games, Salei achieved remarkable success, winning three gold medals and a single silver medal. It is a remarkable testament to Salei’s strength of character and determination that he has been able to achieve such success in the Paralympic Games.

He has triumphed over adversity to make a name for himself and his nation, and his accomplishments serve as an encouragement to others who may be facing similar challenges.

His success has been celebrated by Azerbaijan and by Belarus, and he has been recognized as an exemplary athlete who is well-deserving of his accolades.

12. Dzmitry Salei

Dzmitry Salei is an inspirational figure in the world of sports. He is a Belarusian Paralympic swimmer who is visually impaired. Despite this disability, Salei has achieved remarkable sporting success.

In 2008 and 2012, he represented Belarus in the Summer Paralympics, winning the gold medal in the 100m butterfly S13. He has made history as the first Belarusian to win a gold medal in the Paralympics. In 2014, Salei made a daring move and switched national teams to Azerbaijan.

This was a brave decision, as it meant leaving his native Belarus and competing for a different country.

Salei has said that the reason for his decision was that he wanted to be able to compete at the highest level and that Azerbaijan offered him the best opportunity to do this. Since joining the Azerbaijani team, Salei has gone on to achieve even more success.

He competed in the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games and won four medals: three silver medals and a bronze.

He also competed in the 2020 Tokyo Paralympics, where he won two silver medals. Dzmitry Salei is an example of how determination and hard work can help someone achieve their goals, regardless of any physical disabilities.

He has shown that anyone can make a difference in the world of sports. He is an inspiration to many, and his story is an example of what is possible when we strive to reach our goals.


We can conclude that Azerbaijan has some of the best swimming players in the world, with multiple Olympic and World Championship medals to their name.

They have achieved success in both long-course and short-course events, and have consistently been ranked among the top swimming nations. The dedication and hard work of these swimmers has helped to put Azerbaijan on the global swimming map..

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Marjan Sokolovski

I am a professional swimming coach who has been coaching for over 20 years. I have coached athletes in the Olympics and Paralympics, and I have also helped to train people across the world. I started my coaching career by teaching swimming lessons at a local pool. I was really passionate about teaching people how to swim, but I quickly realized that this wasn't enough for me. I wanted to make a difference in people's lives and help them achieve their goals. I started working with athletes in high school, college, and then professionally. The best part about coaching is that you get the opportunity to work with so many different types of people from all walks of life - it's just incredible! LinkedIn