By Agha Iqrar Haroon
Islamabad, Pakistan: Cruising again on Pakistani snows, Ukrainian Skier Anastasia Gorbunova participated in two slalom and two giant slalom of Chief of the Air Staff International Karakoram Alpine Ski Cup held at Naltar Ski Resort and she bagged three Bronze Medals and one Gold Medal. Anastasia Gorbunova believes that Pakistan is an Amazing Country with exceptional hospitable people, and a land to visit at least once in one’s life time.
Pakistan is no more an unknown land for her because it was her second travelled to Pakistan as she also attended Malam Jabba International Skiing Competition in February 2017.
In an exclusive interview through correspondence with Dispatch News Desk (DND) News Agency, she expressed her gratitude to people of Pakistan, Pakistani Ski Federation and Pakistan Air Force (PAF) for excellent hospitality and opportunity of winning international standard Skiing Competition.
She said that Naltar made her fall in love with Pakistan again, with its beautiful landscapes, sunny weather and nice skiing slopes. Her expressions are hereunder for readers to know how much Pakistan is loved by people who visit this land of love and hospitality.
Anastasia Gorbunova says:
“I would like to say many thanks to Pakistani Ski Federation together with Pakistan Air Force, because these people made us (Ukrainian team members) feel like we are at home even if we were thousand kilometers away, for their kindness and hospitality.
You guys did an amazing job! Even if we will compare races that I have entered two years ago (Malam Jabba International Skiing Competition in February 2017), we all can see that you’ve made a huge progress in organizing this event.
The hardest part for me was staying at this high altitude, it had an impact on my health but after two days I have adapted to this conditions.
My message for tourists is pretty clear: Pakistan is a safe, beautiful country with kind and smiling people. So come and discover the beauty by your own eyes.
I have heard a lot of stories about Pakistani skiers, how they started their sporting career. It was impressive.
My story is not that dramatic, I started to Ski when I was three years old. I don’t remember that time, I guess I liked it and I decided to do it until nowadays.
I have been thought a lot of competitions. The biggest are First Winter Youth Olympic Games which were held in Innsbruck (Austria) in 2012. And World Championships in Schladming in 2013. I like this sport and this is my life.
Thank you, Pakistan, you are amazing!”
It may be mentioned competition was attended by 40 skiers from 13 countries including host country Pakistan, Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Belgium, Greece, Morocco, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkey, Hong Kong, United Kingdom but Ukrainian team virtually wrote this event on their names.
Tsibelenko Levko and Nariichyn Andriy (in men’s categories) and Tetyana Tikun and Anastasia Gorbunova (in women’s categories) would be remembered in skiing slops of Pakistan for their exceptional performances.
It is pertinent to mention here that Ambassador of Ukraine in Pakistan His Excellency Volodymyr Lakomov has been working proactively to bridge Pakistan with Ukraine and encourages participation of Ukrainians wherever it is possible and invites Pakistanis where they can promote their country in Ukraine.