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Sky Brown: Teenage skateboard sensation saddened by plight of Afghan girls, saying ‘girls can do anything that boys can do but even better’

The 13-year-old skateboarder gained bronze within the ladies’s park remaining in Tokyo, but as she basks in these comfortable reminiscences, Brown can be troubled by quite a few tales relating to ladies in sport that have emerged from Afghanistan because the Taliban takeover.
Both the senior and youth members of the ladies’s soccer groups have been evacuated, with one Taliban official stating that Afghan ladies wouldn’t be permitted to take components in sports activities the place they’d be “uncovered.”

“This is simply so unhappy to me,” Brown advised CNN Sport when requested about her work with the nonprofit group Skateistan.

“I can’t think about why can’t ladies have enjoyable too. We can do anything that boys can do but why can’t we have now enjoyable? That’s simply actually unhappy for me and I actually wish to assist them.”

Targeting kids in areas the place they’ve restricted entry to sport and schooling, Skateistan fuses skateboarding with “inventive arts-based schooling” to “give kids the chance to change into leaders for a greater world,” based on the group’s web site.

With a selected concentrate on ladies, kids with disabilities and people from low-income backgrounds, Skateistan has partnered with the British teen skateboarder and boardmaker Almost — designing a line of distinctive, Brown-inspired skateboards to be offered, with 20% of the proceeds going on to Skateistan.

According to their website, Skateistan primarily focuses on efforts in Cambodia, South Africa and Jordan, but has run a number of initiatives in Afghanistan and has a Skate School in Kabul.

“I wish to present the world that ladies can do anything,” added Brown, who has been working with Skateistan since 2017. “Girls can do anything that boys can do but even higher, and I really feel like sport teaches us confidence and independence.

“I hope to do much more in Cambodia and Afghanistan, even in England — simply in every single place.”

Brown poses with her Olympic bronze at Ariake Urban Sports Park.

For Brown, skateboarding is the right medium to precise oneself, particularly since age isn’t any barrier to participation. Having first picked up a board as a toddler, the 13-year-old loves the game’s environment.

“Skateboarding is like one massive household. Skateboarding is gorgeous,” Brown stated.

“There’s no age — simply get on the market and go for it. Have enjoyable. Enjoy since you adore it, take child steps.

“Even when you’re tremendous outdated like even 80 years outdated — there’s individuals skating in Japan that I do know that’s 80 years outdated and even Tony Hawk — he is 50 and he is nonetheless ripping it,” added Brown, referring to the legendary US skateboarder.

Sibling rivalry

Skating shortly over the implication that 50 is outdated — for Hawk’s sake greater than anybody’s — Brown additionally make clear her outstanding Tokyo expertise.

Having made errors in her first two runs, Brown nailed a kickflip Indy en path to a flawless remaining run that noticed the teenager pip 15-year-old Japanese skateboarder Misugu Okamoto to a history-making bronze.

The gold medal winner was Okamoto’s compatriot Sakura Yosozumi — who Brown revealed is now one of her “finest pals” after the Japanese skateboarder performed a pivotal position within the Briton’s restoration forward of the ultimate run.

“She [Sakura] is the one who actually made me really feel like I truly obtained it,” Brown stated.

“She was giving me a hug and stated ‘Look into my eyes … Sky, you bought it. We imagine in you, we all know you are gonna get this, simply stick it.’ And yeah, she simply made me simply wish to stick it so dangerous.”

Brown can be an avid surfer with goals of competing on the Paris Olympics in 2024, although the teenager’s hopes of competing throughout two occasions could also be difficult by the very fact that the browsing occasion is ready to happen over 9,000 miles away in Tahiti.

Brown surfs at a beach in Takanabe town, Miyazaki prefecture.

“I like browsing, it is similar to skateboarding to me,” Brown stated.

“Tahiti sounds very nice, I’ve by no means been there. The factor is in Paris, I actually hope to do each. I’m going to attempt my finest, do no matter I can to do each,” she added.

Her youthful brother, Ocean, is following in his sister’s footsteps and is a proficient skateboarder and surfer.

“I’m not gonna lie, he is [Ocean] getting fairly good,” Brown stated.

“He’s going little by little and it is so cool to see my brother getting higher, but I’m very aggressive with him, so I’m nonetheless gonna attempt to be higher.

“That can be very unhappy if he will get forward of me!”

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