Srinagar’s alpine skier Haya goes ‘uphill’, represents India in UAE

TIt is the first major international level event participation for Haya who started skiing at the age of seven.

by WebDesk
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Srinagar: Turn right, turn left, and go straight. There is no such thing as too much snow or anything too difficult. The highly-talented alpine skier from Srinagar, Haya Muzaffer has proven that.

The 21-year-old skier from Batamaloo area of Srinagar is representing India in the UAE Alpine Slalom Championship (FIS Race) in Dubai.

Haya is part of a 12-member Indian contingent for the UAE Alpine Slalom Championship that started on November 2 and concludes on November 9 in Dubai City.

The Indian contingent was invited by the UAE Winter Sports Federation on the recommendation of Ski and Snowboard India.

Apart from Haya, Olympian Arif Khan and Waseem Bhat are also a part of the team from Kashmir.

It is the first major international level event participation for Haya who started skiing at the age of seven.

FIS races are the set criteria for earning points for the Winter Olympics.

Skiers from all over the world participate in such races to get a chance to make it to the Olympics. For Haya, who during the last two seasons has been shining for J&K at the national level, it is a career-changing opportunity.

“It is a dream come true to be participating in the FIS Race. I have always dreamt about it and finally, I am realising my dream,” Haya said.

In 2021, Haya, apart from winning the district and state-level events went on to bag silver and bronze medals for J&K at the national level.

In 2022, she went on to bag another silver medal for J&K in the Alpine Skiing National held in Uttarakhand.

“I have been working hard and the recent results both at the J&K level and national level are testimony to that. I have been able to win medals for J&K in the national championships,” Haya said.

She said that the FIS Race in the UAE would give her the much-needed opportunity to have first-hand experience of world-level skiing.

“FIS Race is something else when it comes to competition. The level of competition is so high that one can’t relax even for a second. These competitions teach you a lot of things and help a player to get better,” Haya said. “With Arif also on the team, I will be able to learn a lot from him. I am sure that by participating in this event I will be able to improve my game manifold.”

Winter Games Association of J&K President Muhammad Abbas Wani hailed Haya for her talent and expressed hope that she does well in the event.

“These athletes have been chosen by Ski India itself with no role of ours. But it is good to see three of our players being part of the Indian contingent. The good thing is that a girl skier from Kashmir is participating in such a top-level event,” he said.


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