Monday, 24. November 2014
24. 07. 14. - 16:00
An attractive teenage volleyball player from Borat's homeland Kazakhstan has come under fire from her own side – because she is so attractive nobody is watching the sport any more.
Eighteen-year-old Sabina Altynbekova turned up in the Taiwanese capital Taipei as part of the Kazakhstan team taking part in the Asian Championship U-19 volleyball contest, where she quickly took centre stage because of her good looks.
Local media that would normally only devote a few lines to the contest were running 10 page picture features with images of the teenager, and she quickly generated dozens of anime cartoon characters from fans mainly in Japan as a tribute to her good looks.
But that failed to impress members of her own team as well as media in her homeland that have slammed the obsession with good-looking 18-year-old Sabina, saying it is 'ruining' the atmosphere of the championships.
Back home in Kazakhstan the respected daily newspaper Vesti reports that the obsession with the player has destroyed the atmosphere of the championship played in Taipeh. They wrote: "Fans just stare at her and they are not following the championship anymore."
Even the national team coach of Kazakhstan's junior team has complained about it.
Nurlan Sadikov said to Tengrin News: "It is impossible to work like this. The crowd behaves like there is only one player at the championship."
But the appeal has had absolutely no effect on the obsession with the teenager, with every photo attracting vast numbers of comments and Facebook pages will claiming to be the official page springing up and overnight attracting tens of thousands of likes and followers mostly from China, Vietnam, Taiwan, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia and the Philippines.
For her part the teenager said she is very flattered by the attention. Concentrate on volleyball, and appealed for fans to stop setting up social media pages in her honour. She said: "I was flattered at first but it's all getting a little bit much, I want to concentrate on playing volleyball and to be famous for that, not anything else."
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