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Preston aims to make team GB ladies deaf team

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Football can at times be a very challenging sport. You have the best part of twenty other team mates competing for a place in the squad who have similar abilities to you.
 
Being deaf as well as playing football is an even greater challenge. That is according to Olivia Preston (pictured right for Bonnyrigg Rose Girls 17's), one of Scotland's rising young talents in football. She plays her football with a cochlear implant due to the fact that she is deaf. She explained how challenging it can be when playing football with limited hearing.
 
“Some difficulties the deaf athlete may face are communication barriers with their team mates and coaches when calling out plays, stopping the game, or calling for the ball,” according to Olivia, who also hopes to one day represent Team GB and Scotland's ladies team.
 
Being deaf has had quite an affect on my performance a lot because every time when I'm playing at football match, I couldn't hear very well,” she added. “The wind kept blowing in my cochlear and I couldn't hear my team mates shouting, referee's whistle, offside, my coaches shouting.”
 
Without the cochlear implant, Olivia wouldn't be able to hear anything. Communication with players and coaches is the hardest thing to overcome. This hasn't affected her ability to play football. She says that “I'm trying as best as I can” and hopes to “become a famous footballer like Alex Morgan or Cristiano Ronaldo.”
 
She added that “I'm hoping that one day I play for Team GB ladies deaf team and playing for Scotland.”

Daniel Smith | YFS South East Region Journalist
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