Nasra Abubakar Ali: Somalia’s 'slowest ever athlete' speaks out after viral race

Nasra Abubakar Ali: Somalia’s 'slowest ever athlete' speaks out after viral race

Somalia's Nasra Abukar Ali during the 100 meters games in China. She completed the race last in 21.8 seconds

Nasra Abubakar Ali, the Somali 'athlete' who went viral for running the 100-metre race in 21 seconds on Wednesday at the World University Games in China, now says she was nursing a sprained leg when she participated in the event.

In a statement, Ali expressed astonishment that she was heavily criticized for her lackluster performance despite the fact that she was allegedly injured.

Ali took close to 22 seconds to complete the race – almost twice as long as the winner Gabriela Silva Mourao, who clocked in at 11.58 seconds. Her time has since been labeled the ‘slowest-ever’ in the track event.

“Somalis do not deserve to be represented in a running competition, I ran with a sprained leg, but I am criticized,” she said.

Hundreds of dismayed Twitter users have been circulating the clip of Ali's performance while slamming Somalia's Ministry of Youth and Sports for sending the obviously "untrained" athlete to such a high-profile competition. 

In the video, as other female athletes gear up for the race - by prancing about, crouching, etc - Ms Ali is seen standing around idly, totally confused about what to do.

As soon as the buzzer goes, the other girls shoot ahead, athletically, leaving behind Ms. Ali who now appears to be merely jogging along, unbothered.

The Somali athlete is eventually left so far behind that, even after the rest have long crossed the finish line, she can still be seen trodding on, leisurely flipping around her arms.

Cameras picked her up almost skipping over the finishing line around 10 seconds after the winner.  

People are now calling Ali, who is reportedly related to Somali athletics vice-president Khadija Adan Dahir, the worst athlete in history to have participated in the international games, saying she has set the "record for the slowest finish" in the history of the competition.

The BBC reports that Somalia has suspended a sports official for nepotism for allowing a 'novice sprinter' compete in an international sports competition.


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