Male cat becomes mascot of champion women’s team
The players of ALG Spor, which has clinched the trophy in the Turkcell Women’s Süper Lig, have dedicated the championship to a male British Shorthair cat named “Casper,” that became the team’s mascot through the season.
“Casper is the only male in the team,” said goalkeeper Selda Akgöz who is also the owner of the 1-year-old cat.
On June 13, ALG Spor beat Karagümrük 2-1 in the final match of the league in Istanbul to win the trophy.
At the start of the championship ceremony, a cat Akgöz was holding drew all the interest, rather than the celebrating players.
“Casper brought luck to the team. All the players love it so much,” she said and added: “Even the two players, İlayda and Beyza, who had ailurophobia, beat their fear with Casper.”
Apart from the trophy, Casper also passed from hand to hand during the ceremony.
“One day in [the northwestern province of] Kocaeli, the cleaner left the door open and Casper ran away from the hotel room,” Akgöz said while depicting the team’s “biggest nightmare” of the season.
“All the players started searching the hotel with tears in their eyes. Finally, we found it in another room and relaxed.”
For Akgüz, who recently became 29 years old, Casper is “more than a mascot.”
“I domesticated it so much. I had a tattoo of it on my right arm,” she noted.
Established in 1998, ALG spor is a [southeastern province of] Gaziantep-based women’s team, struggling in the Turkcell Women’s Süper Lig since the 2018-19 season.