Social networking websites and online forums were flooded with pictures of Kazakhstan volleyball player Sabina Altynbekova on Tuesday, whose doll-like face and long legs have made her amass more than 120,000 fans in a few days.
The 17-year-old athlete from the Kazakhstan national volleyball team quickly won the hearts of netizens in Hong Kong and Taiwan as she is participating in the ongoing Asian Women’s Volleyball Championship in Taipei.
Although the Central Asian country is not among the top volleyball teams (Japan beat Kazakhstan 3-0 on Tuesday; Kazakhstan is competing with Taipei for the 7th place on Wednesday) and Altynbekova’s skill in the sport is less than legendary, audiences are very much impressed with her cute face, height (182 cm) and long legs (120 cm), Apple Daily reported on Wednesday.
Altynbekova’s account in Instagram, an online mobile photo-sharing and social networking service, only had 300 followers before the match. But it quickly ballooned to 122,000 as of Wednesday morning. A Facebook page opened by her fans over the weekend also has accumulated more than 83,000 likes.
Altynbekova said she was surprised by the sudden fame but said she wanted others to appreciate her sport skills more, according to a separate report by Metro Daily.
“If I am popular here because somebody thinks I am pretty, I don’t feel very good. If others like me because of my skills in volleyball, I will be happier,” she said, also encouraging others to pay more attention to her teammates.
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