National shooting athlete Ziyan Ziyau and member of the women's three-on-three basketball team, Fathmath Ehau Shameem, had the honor of hoisting the Maldivian flag during the opening ceremony of the ongoing Asian Games in China.
Originally scheduled for September last year, the Asian Games were rescheduled to this year due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The official opening ceremony unfolded at the Hangzhou Olympic Sports Centre Stadium, signifying the commencement of 40 sports included in the Games, with Maldives participating in nine of these disciplines.
The sports in which Maldives is competing include shooting, three-on-three basketball, athletics, badminton, table tennis (TT), swimming, beach volleyball, cricket, and e-sports.
Before the official start of the tournament, the Maldives beach volleyball team initiated their matches two days in advance. On Thursday, Adam Naseem (Adam) and Ismail Sajid (Kudakatte) encountered a 21-11, 21-12 defeat against a Chinese pair. The subsequent day, the Maldivian duo endured a similar outcome, succumbing to the Philippines by the same score.
The TT women's and men's team events also commenced on Friday, featuring matches between both teams.
In the women's team event, the first match ended with Chinese Taipei securing a victory in three straight games. Aishath Rafa Nazim faced an 11-3, 11-3, 11-1 defeat in the first singles game. In the second match, Laisa Fathullah Ismail lost 11-4, 11-4, 11-6. The third game saw Fathimath Jumana Nimal losing 11-3, 11-2, 11-5.
Similarly, the men's TT team experienced a three-game defeat against Chinese Taipei on Friday. Mohamed Shafaan Ismail lost 11-2, 11-1, 11-5 in the first game, while Moosa Munsif Ahmed encountered an 11-5, 11-5, 11-7 loss in the second game. In the final match, Ahyar Ahmed Khalid faced an 11-6, 11-5, 11-2 defeat.
The TT women's and men's teams participated in their second matches, with the women's team facing North Korea. Rafa's match ended with an 11-5, 13-11, 11-6 loss in the first game, and Laisa lost 11-1, 11-2, 11-3 in the second. Jumana's match concluded with an 11-5, 11-8, 11-2 defeat.
In the men's TT team's second game, they faced Kazakhstan, ending with an 11-3, 11-2, 11-5 loss in the first game for Shafaan, and Munsif's match ended in an 11-8, 11-6, 11-8 defeat.