Wed, 05 Aug 2020

Iran's Abbasali Plans to Win Olympic Medal

Tasnim
04 Jul 2020, 00:37 GMT+10

TEHRAN (Tasnim) - Hamideh Abbasali is ready to embrace her longed-for opportunity at Olympic Games winning a medal as the first Iranian female karate player.

- Sports news -

"I have been focusing all my efforts and planning on the Olympics," Abbasali told Olymics.org. "I have been planning much more seriously for the Karate1 [the results of which fed into the WKF's Olympic ranking system]. I have always been trying to finish those competitions successfully so that the way to reach the Olympics was smoother for me."

Just as all this combined to deliver her ticket to Tokyo, her ACL snapped. Surgery in Germany followed swiftly and, although Abbasali now insists that she "never despaired" that she could get herself fit in time for Tokyo 2020, the doubts must have been there. It is why amid the darkness of the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a chink of sporting light for the athlete.

"It was really good news for me," Abbasali admitted of the 12-month enforced postponement of the Tokyo 2020 Games.

The knee is already feeling good.

"About three months have passed since my knee surgery and I started rehabilitation exercises. I am in good condition," the +68kg fighter confirmed.

If she manages to mirror her hero and write her name in karate folklore, Abbasali knows she will have one person to thank.

"The main hero of my life is my mother," she said. "She was interested in her daughters being athletes. I enrolled with my sister in a club near our house. But my sister did not continue, and I, who was not interested in karate in the beginning, gradually became interested in the sport."

It has proved a good match. Abbasali's mentality is clearly ideally suited to the demands of kumite.

"My greatest strength as a karateka is having patience and hope until the last moment. I always try to do my best in all competitions," she said.

It looks like it will, with a little luck, be enough to get her to where she has always wanted to go.

"Many years ago, whenever I was asked, 'What is your biggest wish?', I would say in response, 'Winning the Olympics' and most of the times I heard back that karate was not in the Olympics and that I could not achieve this dream... But I did not forget my dream. I have been waiting for it to come true for years," Abbasali concluded.

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