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  Professional Profile

Born in 1988, Zeina , has always had a very athletic disposition. She started gymnastics at the age of five and table tennis at age of seven. She competed in both until the age of eleven when she decided to concentrate her efforts on table tennis.

At age ten she started competing in international competitions. She made her inaugural international appearance at the United States Open in Fort Lauderdale at the age of ten taking the "U-10" title. In 2001 she was on duty at the Liebherr World Individual Championships in Paris and in 2004 was Jordan 's leading female player at the Liebherr World Team Championships in Doha . Meanwhile, success in 2003 at the West Asian Olympic Qualification tournament in Qatar booked her a place in the Olympic Games in Athens in August 2004 where she reached the round of the last sixty-four, losing to the experienced Romanian, Adrian ZAMFIR.

Zeina, was first introduced to table tennis in her home in Jordan at the age of six, where she occasionally played with her father. Her ambitious personality had realized for Zeina a life of academic, artistic, and athletic achievements, earning scores of ‘first place' trophies in various international tournaments and numerous awards for creativity and excellence at school.

She continued to play with her father for the following year while she was seriously involved in gymnastics, participating in the National Gymnastics Team where she as ranked among the top four.

In the summer of 1996, a change in Zeina's life occurred when she headed with her family to watch the Olympic games in Atlanta . There, the family was introduced to the then Chinese table tennis world champion, Deng Yaping. From that moment on, table tennis was to be Zeina's calling. Upon returning, Zeina's parents hired a private coach to train her at their home in the garage-turned- training hall together with her then seven year-old brother Zeid.

By year's end, Zeina was exhibiting skill, agility, and tremendous endurance. She would completely stop gymnastics by the end of 1997.


The Beginnings
Zeina's first camp was in Shanghai , China in January 1997. She was determined to excel and be a worthy competitor in a country recognized for its superb table tennis sport.

Thanks to this training camp, which gave her the initial motivation needed to reach such a high level of performance, her list of accomplishments is growing quite rapidly. She won Jordan 's Championship for the under 14-year-olds when she was only nine years old . She then obtained the Open American Championship for the under 10-year-olds in the summer of 1997. In 1998 she won first place in Sweden 's Safirs Tournament for the under 10-year-olds. This rising star was well on her way to becoming internationally competitive.

Her training camps in China continued during summer and winter vacations of almost every year and she was accompanied by Zeid and their youngest sister Raya.

Zeina's participation in European championships for her age group and older continued as she earned numerous titles. She became known at international table tennis meets as the Jordanian Girl . As a Jordanian ambassadress she strives to represent her country in the best way possible including having good sports etiquette and sound spoken English and to a lesser extent French, which exposes her to a wide audience.

In January 1, 2003 , Zeina obtained a scholarship from the Olympic Solidarity Fund. This scholarship is given to a handful of young, distinguished players across the world to improve their chances of qualification to Olympic games. In little time Zeina qualified for the Athens Olympics at age 15 snatching the only place allocated for West Asian countries.

The German Company, Tibhar, signed a contract with Zeina after her participation in the World Championships in Paris in the summer of 2003. The sponsorship package included wearing their attire and using the company's gear and equipment. This contract gave Zeina a push forward, being one of a handful of Arab table tennis players to have a special contract with a company as an advertising medium.

In 2003 Zeina was named Jordan's top athlete for 2003 following a nationwide poll organized by Sport Up Jordan, a campaign aimed at highlighting the achievements of sportsmen and sportswomen. She won a staggering 43.79% of the votes over taekwando's Ibrahim AQIL (32.69%) and footballer Mahmoud SHILBAYEH (15.38%).

In 2004 His Majesty King Abdullah II awarded Zeina the prestigious King Hussein Medal for Achievement, for her excellence in sport. This medal is awarded to a selected Jordanian athlete every year who's achievement brings pride to the country.