Opinion
| 2 months

Arif and Waseem: New Breed of Talent in Skiing

Arif Khan, an Olympian, and Waseem Ahmed Bhat, a rising star from J&K, will represent India at the Alpine Slalom Championship (FIS Races) in the United Arab Emirates. Arif Khan and Waseem Bhat would both be a part of the 12-person Indian contingent that the UAE Winter Sports Federation invited at Ski & Snowboard India’s recommendation. Both put in a lot of effort in Gulmarg for years to succeed internationally.

India’s winter sports scene is well-known for Arif Khan. At the Beijing Winter Olympics 2022 earlier this year, he was the only athlete to represent India. Arif was the first Indian to qualify for two events in the same Games edition. He took part in both the giant and slalom events. He has competed in several international events as India’s representative. At the South Asian Winter Games in 2011, he brought home two gold medals for India in the slalom and giant slalom Alpine skiing events. Through these FIS competitions, Arif would be launching his attempt for qualification into the upcoming Olympics. Skier Waseem Bhat, who is talented and up-and-coming, represented India in Lebanon last year. It will be his debut FIS Race, but he has won medals for J&K in the national scene. Two sportsmen competing in the FIS race is fantastic for the winter sports of J&K, according to President of the Winter Games Association of J&K (WGAJK) Muhammad Abbass Wani.

Arif is now regarded as a winter sports legend in India as well as J&K. He made the entire nation proud earlier this year by participating in the Winter Olympics as its lone representative. He will now make an effort to improve by competing in FIS races. Arif Khan, an Olympian, and young skier Waseem Ahmed Bhat will compete in the UAE Alpine Slalom Championship, which will take place in Dubai City from November 2 to November 9. On the recommendation of Ski and Snowboard India, the UAE Winter Sports Federation invited a 12-member Indian delegation, which included Arif and Waseem, to compete in the Federation of International Skiing (FIS) Races, which determines the competitors’ eligibility for the Olympics. Arif Khan represents India at the Beijing Winter Olympics 2022 in January of this year. In both slalom and giant slalom, Arif had qualified. Arif has competed for India in several international skiing competitions. At the South Asian Winter Games in 2011, he brought home two gold medals for India in the slalom and giant slalom Alpine skiing events. In Lebanon last year, Waseem Bhat represented India. At the national level, he has won numerous medals, and this will be his second FIS race. President of the Winter Games Association of J&K (WGAJK), Muhammad Abbass Wani, referred to Arif and Khan’s participation in the FIS race as another significant development for J&K’s winter sports.

Both ski athletes have demonstrated their skill in a variety of regional and national competitions originating in the Baramulla area of north Kashmir’s Azad Gunj town. He has participated in numerous national competitions and has been representing J&K while giving honour to the valley by winning a number of medals there. He competed in three national competitions and won two silver medals—one in Slolam and the other in Giant Slolam. In his community, Waseem is also known as Ski Tiger. At the age of nine, he began skiing after being inspired by his brother Jahangir Bhat, who also happened to be a champion skier in Gulmarg.

These two athletes and other Kashmiri luminaries will serve as an example for future generations. There is a fresh wave of good news emerging from the valley which will encourage people to come ahead and make the UT & Country proud.

Ideas, Opinions and Views expressed in articles are Writer’s own and may not be in accord with those of SUBAH KASHMIR