International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in partnership with the Centre for the Rehabilitation of the Paralysed (CRP) organised a friendly wheelchair basketball match in celebration of Women's Day in Savar.
Two teams, Red and Green, consisting of men and women put on a thoroughly entertaining and hard-fought match that ended 7-5 for the Green team.
A very entertaining match
Red started off strong getting the first point within a minute with their very first attack.
A few minutes later, they doubled their lead and looked set to continue their dominance as Green kept getting caught off-guard in the counter-attacks.
But just before the 20-minute half-time mark, the Green team finally managed to score to make it 2-1 at the break.
In the second-half Red once again started off strong and scored to make it 3-1 but they got complacent and Green quickly got another point and the score was 3-2.
Green then created a flurry of offence but Red defended resolutely and then scored from an excellent counter-attack to restore their two-point lead at 4-2.
But Green kept up their pressure and made it 4-3; moments later, they managed another goal as Red stared to become sloppy in defence and the scores were level at 4-4.
Red, however, once again got their lead with another counter-attack to make it 5-4.
With five minutes left on the clock, Green rallied and scored two in two minutes to make the score 5-6 and get the lead for the first time in the match.
With time almost running out, the final point was scored by the Green team as they showed tremendous fortitude to wrap up a hard-fought win in 40 minutes of back-and-forth action.
The inspirational stories of the girls
After the match, the coach of national basketball team Wasif Ali explained how the players from both teams had to overcome a lot of difficulties to play: "These players want to show that they can still play well despite their disabilities. They are not making money by playing but they still give this the time and effort and dedication that any professional basketball player would."
One of the best performers, Fahima Khatun, who scored two points for the Green team expressed how she would like to turn this into her career if possible: "I currently work as a receptionist at CRP making 13 thousand taka a month and I have to provide for my family too. But I love playing basketball and we got to travel to Nepal and Indonesia to play against other teams and I hope that this can become my career in the future."
Ratna Akbar Nadi, who was playing for the Red team spoke about her emotional journey how she lost her legs after being thrown off the second floor by her abusive husband and mother-in-law: "I was married forcefully when I was 11 years old and from then on my mother-in-law and husband used to beat me up. But thankfully my father took me back and sent me to the CRP. Over here, I found basketball and now I don't have to deal with their abuse anymore."