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In Memoriam: Remembering Those We Lost in 2017 - Part 2

In Memoriam: Remembering Those We Lost in 2017 - Part 2
Photo credit: Eduard Gavrish

We continue to honor the memory of the football men who passed away last year and who will always live in the hearts of Kazakhstan football supporters, players, coaches, technicians and pundits.

Part 1 can be found here

Bauyrzhan Salimbayev (1962–2017)

A passionate aficionado and great arranger rolled into one, Bauyrzhan Salimbayev was the key founder of a brand new club, Ile Saulet. It emerged from the amateur team Zhastar in the mid-2000s to take part in local competitions of Ile District, Almaty Region.

As the club's head, Salimbayev put in an enormous amount of effort in order to turn Ile Saulet into ambitious club that reached the First League (second tier of Kazakh football). Afterwards, they came close to promotion to KPL to become one of the most remarkable success stories in recent years.

In 2012, they won the First League but their debut in the top-flight never came as they got no support from the region's authorities. And it was a big drama when Ile Saulet ceased to exist due to a lack of funds.

Nevertheless, Salimbayev's enthusiastic approach and organisational talent remain an inspiration for his colleagues, staff members and players – mostly homegrown products – as well as the local fan bases and journalists.

Bauyrzhan Salimbayev (R) celebrates with his Ile Saulet players (Photo credit: Eduard Gavrish)

Bauyrzhan Sarsekenov (1955–2017)

He was far from making a big statement as a player but thrived after finding his mission in coaching, his deal of a lifetime.

Since becoming football manager in the early 1980s, Bauyrzhan Sarsekenov grew into a professional involved into technical staffs of numerous clubs, including Munaishy Aktau (today's Caspy Aktau), Kairat Almaty, Zhetysu Taldykorgan and Ordabasy Shymkent.

Sarsekenov also gained a lot of experience as a youth coach, leading national teams U-15, U-16, U-17, and took various administrative roles. He possessed an outstanding strategic vision that earned him a reputation of a mastermind and innovator. Honoured Coach of Kazakhstan, Sarsekenov was agile enough to work abroad, developing his last coaching project in neighboring China.

The players who trained under Sarsekenov remember him with warmth, admitting his playing philosophy, understanding of football and educational skills influenced many people.

Bauyrzhan Sarsekenov (Photo credit: Eduard Gavrish)

Viktor Olkhovsky (1940–2017)

The focal point of footballing life in post-WWII Semey (Semipalatinsk) was Tsementnik Semipalatinsk, and the heart and soul of the team was their defensive performer Viktor Olkhovsky.

In 1963, he played key roles in Tsementnik's triumph in the Kazakh SSR Championship, an all-Republic competition, the part of the third level of the tremendous pyramid of Soviet football. It laid foundations for further success of the side that were renamed in 1970 to make way for Spartak Semipalatinsk era.

He was awarded with a degree of the Master of Sports of the USSR and included into the 1961 edition of the Kazakhstan 33 Best Players, a trademark annual honourable list.

Olkhovsky was the urban star and Tsementnik proved to be the only club in his playing career before he started coaching youth teams. Up to his last days, the Spartak Stadium in Semey has been his favourite hangout where he scrutinised performances on the pitch and communicated with his fellow football veterans.

Viktor Olkhovsky, the talismanic leader of the Semipalatinsk team of the 1960s

Timur Segizbayev (1940–2017)

Everyone who ever heard of Timur Segizbayev knew that he was absolutely iconic and admirable player, coach and administrator considered by many as the brightest figure Kazakhstan football has ever seen.

His moment of glory came in 1964 when the 23-year-old Kairat captain scored a double against Spartak Moskva at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow. Since then, Segizbayev was welcomed as the true symbol of Kazakh football, the man of fantastic personal qualities he had in addition to his indisputable professional competence.

As a manager, he guided Kairat to their best result in the Soviet Top League in the 1980s, while as an official, he provided leadership and authority, having a hand in the first steps made by the national FA in the early 1990s, the most difficult time in its history.

His name is synonymous to the entire era of domestic game, his legendary status and glorious image have been testified by numerous articles, TV programs, events, books, films, foundations and institutions, youth and amateur competitions linked with his name, alongside the countless honorable mentions, various tributes and warm memories of several generations of Kazakhstan football fans.

He died just three months after his wife Klara Segizbayeva, the true collaborator and anchorage of his career, passed away. Segizbayev's farewell ceremony has been held at the Almaty Central Stadium, a dream theater in which he created his magic.

Timur Segizbayev, the legendary No.10 of Kazakhstan football (Photo credit: Eduard Gavrish)

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