Skiurlaub- günstig mit FeWo-direkt
ITS | Jahn | Tjaereborg

Center Parcs - der Familienkurzurlaub im Internet!

Hotelsuche in 

NEWS FEATURE Mardini prepares for Rio as face of the Refugee Team By Matthias Bossaller, dpa

Von unserem dpa-Korrespondenten und Europe Online   auf Facebook posten  Auf Twitter posten  
When Yusra Mardini was fleeing war-torn Syria an appearance at the Olympic Games seemed impossible but the face of the Refugee Team is now heading for Rio.

Berlin (dpa) - In only a few days the Olympic dream of Berlin-based Syrian refugee Yusra Mardini will become a reality - she and her swimming coach Sven Spannekrebs will arrive in Rio de Janeiro for the 2016 Olympics.

"The excitement is rising daily and you think about everything that could happen," Spannekrebs said, while the 18-year-old Mardini added she was "proud and thankful" to be taking part.

In addition to starts in the 100-metre butterfly and 100m freestyle, there will be a host of press duties for the teenage star. The German broadcaster ARD has already invited her to its studio.

ARD actually wanted to follow Mardini with a camera en route to Brazil, an opportunity Spannekrebs declined in an attempt to shield his swimmer from some of the media glare which comes from being the face of the Refugee Team.

It is unsurprising that Mardini has become quite well known since the International Olympic Committee (IOC) opened up the possibility of refugees competing in Rio in their own team - with bright eyes, teenage exuberance and fluent English, she is the ideal poster-girl for the policy.

"Many people are inspired by me and I do not want to disappoint them," she said. Mardini is determined to show "that refugees are not only victims. We can do something and achieve things."

In that sense she is a symbol of hope and part of the media interest comes from her dramatic escape from Syria - she and her sister jumped into the water to help push an overcrowded boat to shore as it threatened to sink in the Aegean Sea between Turkey and Greece.

Mardini‘s odyssey ended in Berlin and since Novembver she has been part of a swimming club in Spandau in the west of the German capital. Initially there were no thoughts of the Refugee Team but she and nine other athletes had their places confirmed on June 3, including another swimmer friend from Syria, Rami Anis, who fled to Belgium.

More than 1,000 interview requests have been made to Mardini, who has a bustling Facebook page, while an Italian student wrote to her to say she was the main subject of her homework. Even Hollywood has signalled an interest with a potential film of her story in the pipeline.

At a Berlin media day in March, Mardini came across as a friendly teenager who understood how to deal with the hype. But that is not the whole story.

"I‘ve hated it sometimes," she admitted. "The pressure was enormous."

In Rio the focus will be on swimming but despite training 30 hours a week since November, the two-year break enforced by her situation in leaving Syria means escaping the heats is highly unlikely.

Bigger goals exist already in the shape of Tokyo 2020: "There I‘m dreaming of a gold medal like every athlete," she said.

Perhaps there she will also be able to represent her home country, like more most other athletes.



Kommentare zu diesem Artikel
Neuer Kommentar
Name *
Email * (wird nicht öffentlich angezeigt)
* Pflichtangaben
Diesen Artikel empfehlen

Absender Empfänger Nachricht (optional)

Weitere Artikel zu diesem Thema
Going to the Olympic Games is a goal for many athletes but teenage Syrian swimmer Yusra Mardini, currently a refugee in Berlin, is dreaming of an extra special participation.Berlin (dpa) - Teenage prodigies are far from unique in sport but young
Berlin (dpa) - Syrian swimmer Yusra Mardini, who has been picked for a 10-strong team of refugees for the Rio de Janeiro Olympics, admitted Thursday that she had huge problems owing a media hype around her."Sometimes I hated it. The pressure was
Washington (dpa) - Led by swim star Michael Phelps, the United States are sending their biggest ever team, 555 athletes, to the Rio de Janeiro Games, the nation‘s Olympic Committee (USOC) said on Saturday.The team boasts 263 men and 292 women,
Berlin (dpa) -Year Host Countries Athletes Female/Male Sports EventsI 1896 Athens 14 241 0/241 9 43 II 1900 Paris 24 997 22/975 18 95 III 1904 St Louis 12 651 6/645
A festival of fairness? An embodiment of the Olympic spirit? The Games in Rio have been dogged by problems: doping, Zika, lack of money, building chaos. But perhaps a bit of Brazilian magic can turn things around.Berlin (dpa) - In August, the biggest
Rio de Janeiro (dpa) - The athletes‘ village for the Rio de Janeiro Olympics was to officially open on Sunday, less than a fortnight ahead of the August 5 opening ceremony.Some 18,000 athletes, coaches and officials from around the world will
Tipps der Redaktion aus dem Reiseportal
Pyeongchang, South Korea (dpa) - Norway‘s Marit Bjoergen wins the 30-kilometres cross country ski race to become the best decorated Winter Olympian of a all time with eight gold, four silver and three bronze.
Pyeongchang, South Korea (dpa) - China highlighted that construction for the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics is in full swing while trying to defuse questions on the sensitive issue of artificial snow-making at the ski venues.Organizing committee BOCOG
Berlin (dpa) - Figure skating events at the Pyeongchang Olympics, with day and time (in GMT), 2014 champions and athletes to watch.Monday, February 12, 0100: team event (Russia) Thursday, February 15, 0130: pairs (Tatiana Volosozhar/Maxim Trankov,
Seoul (dpa) - An overview of venues to be used to the Pyeongchang Winter Olympic Games in 2018.Pyeongchang Mountain ClusterLocated around 180 kilometres east of Seoul in the Gangwon province. Here there is the 35,000-capacity Olympic stadium for the
Frankfurt (dpa) - Germany will be unable to host an Olympic Games inside the next decade but the subject will not remain closed, a leading official has said."The overall topic of a potential bid has rather a mid- or long-term character," German
Pyeongchang, South Korea (dpa) - The International Olympic Committee advanced plans on Thursday to set up an independent anti-doping testing system following the drugs scandal in Russian sports.The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) is also set to
Tipps der Redaktion aus dem Nachrichtenportal
Berlin (dpa) - Germany‘s newly-minted Economy Minister, Peter Altmaier, has stressed the virtues of open markets and expressed confidence that Europe and the United States can reach a compromise on trade in his first major interview since
London (dpa) - Britain‘s Foreign Office said it is considering a request from Russia to see Yulia Skripal, whose condition has improved after she was poisoned in the city of Salisbury in early March.Skripal is the daughter of former Russian
London (dpa) - Britain‘s Foreign Office said it is considering a request from Russia to see Yulia Skripal, whose condition has improved after she was poisoned in the city of Salisbury in early March.Skripal is the daughter of former Russian
Berlin (dpa) - An ongoing dispute within Germany‘s coalition over the role of Islam in the country re-emerged on Saturday, as party officials gave conflicting messages in interviews published by German media.Just ahead of Easter celebrations
Madrid (dpa) - Former president of Catalonia Carles Puigdemont on Saturday struck a defiant tone in his first public message since being taken into Germany custody last Sunday. "Let it be clear to all: I will not give up, I will not resign, I will
Seoul (dpa) - North Korean leader Kim Jong Un praised the International Olympic Committee (IOC) for its role in helping bring about a "dramatic thawing season" on the Korean Peninsula, North Korea‘s state media reported on Saturday.North


(20.07.2018 10:24)

20 / 29 °C

20 / 29 °C
19 / 28 °C
powered by
Stock News


Agenda - The Week Ahea ...
Agenda - The Week Ahea ...

Afghan Farah Governor ...
Ministry Warns Cinema ...

5TH LEAD Palestinians ...
German Economy Ministe ...

URGENT: Norway's Bjoe ...
China highlights Beiji ...





© europe online publishing house GmbH, Weiden, Germany, | Impressum