Mumbai: Actor-singer Ali Zafar is sponsoring an U-17 Squash Player, Noorena Shams, for an International tournament who couldn’t get a chance to participate in the tournament, and when Ali got to know he made sure she gets there. This squash Player ranks third in Asia (U-19) Women category and is the youngest Olympian of Pakistan. She’s an artist, U-13 cycling champion, U-19 women cricket team player, belongs to Peshawar and has won 62 gold medals nationally and internationally in sports. The only hurdle in this young multi talented, artist, cyclist, squash player and cricketer and her dream of playing in this year Asian Squash Tournament was the participation fee and expenses involved which is costly for an independent candidate to pay unless sponsored by Government.
The deserving squash player started looking for sponsors who could bear her expenses as a private candidate. After her sponsorship requests to various organisations were not responded to and the squash player thought she would never make it to the tournament and lose an important chance to play for her country, Ali overheard a team member’s conversation about this scenario and requested to contact Noorena. Within minutes she was contacted and sponsored.
Says the 16 year old Noorena, “After not getting sponsored I thought this might be the end of my career. I couldn’t imagine that a screen hero would be my real life hero and my dreams would be fulfilled. I was not disappointed by the decision of the authorities as they try to send the best players and someone who will bring a title for sure. However a chance like this can change a sportsman/athlete’s life. Even Messi didn’t score well in his first match. His journey started after he was given a second chance and I think God sent an angel(Ali) to help me too.”