Zahra Ehsani considers herself “lucky” in many ways after taking part in her first Saskatchewan Roughrider game last weekend.
The 37-year-old Iran-born was introduced to the sights and sounds of the Canadian Football League (CFL) during the recent Classic Labor Day Classic at Mosaic Stadium, and they didn’t. they are disappointed.
“One of my friends with a season ticket invited me here, and I was excited but I don’t know anything about Canadian football because it’s not popular in my country, actually… we (call) football in my country,” Ehsani said.
“When I come to this stadium and I see this huge stadium with so many fans that you can see all just come here to watch the game and you have the opportunity to come here with your family, the kids. “
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The defending champions Winnipeg Blue Bombers beat the Blues and Whites their first loss of the 2021 season by 23-8 on September 5 in front of 32,975 fans.
“Winnipeg won but I want to say that I am one of the Riders fans and even though they couldn’t win, I am proud of them,” Ehsani said.
“Unfortunately, they didn’t play well for this game but I love them.”
The Regina resident said she cherishes the opportunities since arriving in Canada in 2019 and considers herself one of the lucky ones – especially after losing her left leg as a child.
“I was nine (age) and one day when I came back from that academy and I was studying English. I had an accident (car) and my knee was broken and after two months the doctor told me I had bone cancer and he told my parents that I would die in a month,” Ehsani said. .
“Fortunately, I survived. And I had a really hard time in those days, I had chemotherapy and I lost my leg and I had to wear prosthetics… it was hard for me and my parents but fortunately, I’m strong and I’m a great fighter. .
“I was lucky because the doctor told me the car accident showed me the cancer earlier, so maybe I had a chance to start chemotherapy earlier… I am grateful, really throughout my life. , and I’m just trying to change the bad into the good.”
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Ehsani is pursuing her second master’s degree through the University of Regina’s industrial systems engineering program. And while she started learning about CFL football just 11 days ago, Ehsani said she has been a lifelong Rider fan.
“Yes! … I bought a t-shirt and a hat and I am ready to go to the stadium for all those games!” she said.
Saskatchewan and Winnipeg face off again on Saturday at the Banjo Bowl.
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