Mother of Kitchener’s Shelina Zadorsky calls Team Canada Soccer gold ‘absolutely surreal’
Kitchener’s Shelina Zadorsky made history by beating the heavily favored team from the US and ousting Sweden on penalties in the final game of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics on Friday result after bronze wins in London and Rio. Shelina’s mother Mary watched the nerve-wracking experience every step of the way from home and called the experience “absolutely, overwhelmingly surreal” when she saw the phenomenal endgame with the family of Olympian Jessie Fleming.
Given Monday’s experience as a guest on the Mike Farwell Show, Zadorsky said her daughter Shelina has already arrived back in England and will resume pre-season competition in her role as captain of Tottenham Hotspur Football Club – despite the win for Team Canada on Friday was quickly followed by a call from the team’s dressing room to show off the hard-earned gold hardware.
Shortly after Sweden took the lead in the final, Zadorsky said the tension had her family on the edge of their seats – she watched every game and duel with nervous energy while chatting with some of the athlete’s parents over a group chat. Zadorsky noted that many parents of the Olympic team athletes had booked flights to Tokyo together, but as health guidelines for the Games became clearer, they had to cancel all of their travel arrangements.
When the game against Sweden ended on penalties, Zadorsky said she was confident Team Canada would take home the gold medal – as she said the entire team was playing for their captain Christine Sinclair in “changing colors” efforts “The medal.
“She’s the perfect symbol of a top Canadian athlete – I mean, she’s a wonderful person. She speaks softly; There is not a bit of arrogance or pretension. She always puts her crew first and is the captain with such calm self-confidence… ”said Zadorsky. “Even as the top scorer between women and men internationally, she is phenomenal and doesn’t seem to get the same recognition. That was just the icing on the cake for them. “
Regarding her daughter’s experience as a professional athlete, Zadorsky said Shelina lived in Kitchener until she was ninth grade and received “phenomenal coaching” on-site from the beginning of her career in the sport – with a trainer who told her that Shelina would play for Canada for sure.
“You had a ride, but it wasn’t a linear approach to getting there,” said Zadorsky. “Yes, she went to the University of Michigan on a scholarship, played on all Canadian youth teams (…) played pro in Australia, Sweden, Washington and Orlando and is now in England – but the base of it all started in Kitchener. ”
When asked about the sacrifices that would have to be made in order to nurture this young talent, Zadorsky replied that she did not think parents would consider helping their child achieve his or her dream as a “sacrifice”. Child is obliged , then you are obliged. “
“She didn’t push her to anything or anything – she pushed our family somehow …” said Zadorsky. “She was in Toronto four times a week when she was at the provincial level (…) and you just do it. Fortunately, it takes a village to raise a child, and we had a lot of parents to help with driving back and forth … and here we are – gold medal. “
With the women’s soccer team final, which drew 4.4 million viewers for the gold medal run, Zadorsky said the game was a “perfect example” of the positive direction women’s sport has taken. “
“The companies that say, ‘Why invest in women’s sports? Nobody sees it ‘(…) Yes, there is. 4.4 million people watched it. “