Baraa Al-Absi hopes to be able to box internationally. She's won a spot on Jordan's national women's boxing team. and wants to pursue a professional career.
Boxing rules don't allow women to fight wearing the Islamic headscarf known as the hijab. Like many Muslims, she wears the hijab for religious reasons and rather than take it off for a tournament, she quits. "It's a sad feeling and hard for me to be nothing but a spectator," she told CNN. "It really hurts. This was my team and now I'm not part of it."
The Switzerland-based International Boxing Association recently allowed women boxers to choose between skirts and shorts. The hijab is still banned.
"I'm sad for her," Al-Absi's coach, Ayman Al-Nadi said. "She has the power, the talent, her parents' support. Everyone wanted her to achieve something. It's unjust."
Al-Absi thinks the rules will eventually be changed.
In another hijab story, Reuters reports that a female Saudi fighter will take part in the Olympic judo competition after being allowed to wear an Islamic headscarf.