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Samaneh Beyrami-Baher was Iran’s flag bearer at the opening of Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
Samaneh Beyrami-Baher was Iran’s flag bearer at the opening of Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

Skier Baher Proud of First Experience in Olympics

Skier Baher Proud of First Experience in Olympics

Iran’s Samaneh Beyrami-Baher may have come dead last in Olympic sprint qualifying, but she crossed the line bursting with pride at being the only female in her country’s cross-country skiing team in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
Sporting a hijab on a freezing Korean evening, Baher battled round the 1,176-meter course in a time of 4:47.91, over a minute and a half behind winner Stina Nilsson of Sweden, but her pride was undimmed.
“It’s much colder than Iran, Iran is not like here. I‘m so proud of myself, I was not bad,” Baher told Reuters, adding that her pride would be shared by the Iranian people round the globe.
“I think they can be proud because they know my situation, we haven’t had (much) snow in Iran (this year). They can think about it and be proud of me. Just coming and participating in the Olympics is a very good experience and a very good thing,” the 26-year-old said.
Although she was well off the pace on her Olympic debut, Baher felt inspired to be taking part and the crowd gave her a rousing reception as she crossed the line.
“I was excited because it’s my first experience in the Olympic games. Here, there are great champions and very big competition,” she said.
“I‘m proud of myself, but I see myself as weak compared to the other competitors because they are very strong. In Iran we just have three months of snow (at most) and we cannot train all the year, we have to go running.”
Baher is one of the four Iranian skiers competing in Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, February 9-25.

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