SPORTS isn’t always about competition or winning and losing. Empathy, the ability to understand and share the feeling of another person, can also be often found on the play fields. There’s compassion too as we see one player showing a concern for the suffering or misfortune of the other.
We’re taught from childhood that the purpose of human life is not only to serve others, but also show compassion and care for those in distress. The recent visit of Qatar Football Association (QFA) President Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa bin Ahmed Al Thani to Brazil to pay homage to the members of Chapecoense club who perished in a plane crash was in line with this.
A total of 71 people, including members of its first team along with coach, officials and several journalists were killed in the mishap. In a profound demonstration of Qatar’s compassion and understanding, Sheikh Hamad visited the club and met with the officials, conveying the country’s deep sorrow on the tragic acccident.
As a gesture of solidarity, the QFA chief has extended the Chapecoense Under-17 team an invitation to compete in the annual Al Kass international tournament being held in Doha.
In a meeting with his Brazilian counterpart and other officials, apart from the country’s sports minister, he reassured them that Qatar is with them in their hour of grief. Sheikh Hamad also visited the family of Chapecoense’s deceased coach Caio Junior, who had a stint with Qatar’s Al Gharafa club and conveyed his heartfelt condolences.
The kind gesture by Sheikh Hamad has proved yet again that Qatar is a nation which always remembers and cares for those who’ve helped them grow.
I’m sure legendary Brazilian coach Evaristo de Macedo, who guided our football team to two Olympics, Los Angeles (1984) and Barcelona (1992), will vouch for this. He last worked in Qatar in 1994, but he’s still invited by the QFA for all important events, showing our appreciation and remembrance of his good work.
It’s said that love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them, humanity can’t survive. Let’s demonstrate more of them.