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Minister Rafiu appreciates Dheema's parents' sacrifices

Dheema's parents were hailed as heroes and praised by Sports Minister Rafiu for their invaluable sacrifices in ensuring Dheema's success in Table Tennis.

Ameera Osmanagic
17 May 2024, MVT 19:58
fathimath dheema ali / maldives olympic committee
Ameera Osmanagic
17 May 2024, MVT 19:58

Highlighting the immense sacrifices made by the parents of Fathimath Dheema Ali, the first Maldivian athlete to secure a spot at the Olympics after winning qualifiers, Sports Minister Abdulla Rafiu has praised and thanked the couple today.

Dheema, a table tennis player, qualified for the upcoming Summer Olympics to be held in France last Wednesday after competing against Sri Lankan champion Bimandee Bandara in qualifiers match.

In a special ceremony held in Dheema's honour at the social centre in Malé, Minister Rafiu said that the biggest contributors of Dheema's sucess are her parents Aishath Waheeda and Abdul Sattar Ali.

All the sacrifices they made to travel in fulfilling Dheema's travel requirements are a pride for the country, he said explaining that Dheema's parents clarified her training and study arrangements amidst all the traveling for trainings and competitions.

"I asked how her studies are arranged. Parents said [she] studies via online classes," he detailed. He also added that Dheema's parents mentioned the long durations the family has to spend away from their relatives and community due to all the travels.

"In doing all of this, what's being sacrificed is a lot [by Dheema's parents]," he went on to say. "I thank Dheema's parents for enduring all of this and bringing our country to a level [we're] proud of."

In the event Minister Rafiu also delivered the good news that training scholarships would be arranged for various technical and support personnel required by athletes.

Minister Rafiu, who has a background in sports medicine stressed that Maldives' sport development depends on training the support base behind athletes.

"We are working on building the team behind athletes. Behind the team," he said. "Whether it maybe training coaches [and] all the assistance the team needs. We can only take [sports] to the next level by training a lot of people."