Finance

Epidemic travel barriers ‘difficult on my mental health’ – Surfer Page Harib.

Unable to spot MIQ if they travel abroad for competitions, some of New Zealand’s top athletes are being forced to reconsider their career paths.

New Zealand surfer Page Harib sits in a tube during the inaugural Founders' Cup.

Surfer Page Harib sits in a tube during the 2018 Founding Cup in California.
Image: Photosport / WSL

This comes as the wife of multi-sport athlete Braden Curry, who has been stranded in Europe for at least seven weeks after traveling abroad for a competition, has expressed her concern. Inequality in MIQ system.

Sally Curry wrote an open letter to Sports Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Grant Robertson calling for a change in the MIQ process.

But Braden Curry is not alone in having to choose between his home and his career.

Paige Hareb has been a professional surfer for 13 years. It’s a job she loves.

But once faced with an epidemic, he had to make the painful choice of living in New Zealand with no career or income, or to continue competing in events abroad and stay abroad indefinitely. There was a danger of getting stuck.

Although some players have chosen the latter option – praying that they succeed in securing a place in the MIQ – the risk to Harib was very high.

He has decided to withdraw from the World Surf League Challenger series, which starts in California this month.

“It’s probably the biggest decision of my career. Whether I want to go for more than a month or not and towards the end of it, it was shaking my head a bit.

“It’s my career and my job. It’s my main source of income. It’s hard not to say it in the end.

“I’m sorry I decided to get better and I hope it’s the right decision or I have to make the right decision now.”

Harib said that he found it impossible to get a spot book in MIQ, he spent many hours on the website and got help from his family.

“I was watching the competitions that I wanted to do for months. I tried many times and the days just sat at the computer and the spots came up and I only tried with those places, like dates. “It won’t work for me, but I just tried to see if I could be quick enough and I wasn’t.”

Over the past year, Harib has lost all the money she earned from sponsorship deals as well as competitions abroad.

He said the problem had affected his mental health.

“I think somehow it was going to be difficult for my mental health. Even just staying at home even though I’m safe and healthy. I just don’t know when I can get back to my job and career. And the fact is that maybe not and I have to choose a new path which is definitely quite annoying.

“I’m just trying to take it every day as it comes and then hopefully it will all work out.”

Harb has been in touch with a colleague. Surfer cat ladder., Who risked traveling abroad to compete, even though he has not saved MIQ space.

“Until I decided not to go, we were thinking every day what to do and he almost got out of my mind, but he actually raised money for the people who helped him. He said he felt bad if he went out, he was almost in a difficult position and he felt like he had to go.

“He’s leaving his wife at home too. I don’t think he’s 100 percent sure of that, but yes, that’s what he’s doing.”

Currently, Harib is taking a break from her game but hopes to return to the water next year.

If all else fails, get a backup plan.

“I’m still relying only on my sponsors. I got a contest at the end of next month. I hope I can win a little bit of prize money.

“I’m currently trying to get rid of my real estate papers, so maybe go into it and see what happens.”

Sports Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Grant Robertson said. First up He praised how difficult it was for the players for whose jobs they had to travel.

“It was difficult for individuals to book a MIQ spot for large groups like our Olympians or Paralympians,” he said.

“We have a lot of New Zealanders who want to come back here for reasons to do with their families. We have businesses that need important workers like RSE workers to come here. Have to do.

“But I will definitely continue to advocate for these individual players because I know it’s tough on them.”

Ryan Castle, chief executive of Sport New Zealand, declined to comment.

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