Posted on August 07, 2016

Team Qatar’s athletes will dive straight into sporting action on a busy first day of Rio 2016 in Brazil with swimming, boxing, beach volleyball and table-tennis all competing in the opening day.

Leading the way swimmer Nada Arakji is poised to make Qatar sports history in the pool at Maria Lenk Aquatic centre as she becomes the first Team Qatar female to participate in two Olympic Games following her debut in London 2012. Arakji will swim on Saturday in the 100m butterfly ahead of seventeen year old Noah Al-Khulaifi who will experience competition in the Olympics for the first time on Sunday in the 100m backstroke.

Speaking from Rio, swimmer Nada Arakji said: “It feels amazing to finally be in Rio. It’s been great so far and everyone has been so supportive from the Qatar Olympic Committee delegation on the ground to Team Qatar supporters back in Doha and around the world. With that encouragement and support as well as being surrounded by world-class athletes like Michael Phelps just pumps you up even more to be the best that you can be. “I know being here is already a massive achievement and something I will always look back at proudly. Hopefully it will inspire even more young females in Qatar to follow their sporting dreams.  On Saturday all I can do is give it everything and hope to compete strongly. I’d also like to wish every member of Team Qatar success.

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First day action on Saturday in Rio also awaits boxer Hakan Erseker in the 60kg category and table-tennis player Li Ping, while Team Qatar’s beach-volleyball duo will play on the dramatic and world renowned setting of Copacabana beach in the first round. Having practiced at the iconic location Cherif Younousse said: “Now is the time to focus. This is all we have thought about, dreamt about and practiced for since we knew we would compete in Rio 2016. Everyone has come together with one focus. To get through the early rounds and build from there. We need everyone to help support us, everyone back home to get online and share the campaign #YallaQatar.”  

To follow the hopes and dreams of Team Qatar or to show your support and leave messages please go to Qatar Olympic Committee’s social media channels on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and follow the #YallaQatar campaign or the QOC website at www.olympic.qa

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