DUSHANBE, February 4, 2010, Asia-Plus  -- Tajikistan’s first-ever Olympic medalist, judoka Rasoul Boqiyev, has returned home and is ready to represent Tajikistan in international judo tournaments, Asia-Plus has learned at the National Olympic Committee (NOC) of Tajikistan.

NOC hosted a news conference on this subject yesterday.  NOC and Tajik Aluminum Company (TALCO) have singed a contract on the sponsorship support for Rasoul Boqiyev, the source said.

As it had been reported earlier, the issue of Boqiyev’s return to Tajikistan was solved in Dushanbe on December 25, 2009.

It is to be noted that since 2004, Rasoul Boqiyev has been trained at the Smabo-70 Club in Moscow.

Rasoul Boqiyev is one of the top judokas in Tajikistan in the -73 kg category; he won the first medal for Tajikistan in the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.  He won the bronze medal in the -73 kg category, defeating Dirk van Tichelt of Belgium.  This was Tajikistan''s first medal of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games.  In 2008, Rasoul Boqiyev was ranked No 3 in the world in his weight category.  He claimed his Olympic berth by finishing third at the 2007 World Judo Championships in Rio de Janeiro.

In October 2009, Rasoul Boqiyev won gold medal, finishing first in the –73 kg category in the 2009 Russia’s Judo Championships.

In early December last year, Nourullo Loiqov, the head of Tajikistan’s Judo Federation, visited Moscow, where he met with Rasoul Boqiyev to discuss his return to Tajikistan.