Fatima Al Ali is an Emirati ice hockey player, coach and referee--and, not surprisingly, she's also a huge NHL fan.
But the young hockey player didn't know her dreams would come true when she caught the eye of ex-Washington Capitals player Peter Bondra in November of last year.
Bondra, who was visiting the UAE on a good-will trip, noticed the 27-year-old captain of the UAE's national women's hockey team practicing her puck skills. Impressed by her tricks, Bondra recorded a video and posted it on YouTube. It quickly went viral.
Now, Bondra isn't the only NHL star who's paying attention: earlier this week, the Washington Capitals flew Al Ali out to D.C. to attend her first professional hockey game, making her dream come true. "It's better than a dream," she told CBS news.
The trip was particularly made particularly memorable when, after watching her hero Alex Ovechkin score a goal, she got to meet the player face-to-face.
Can't thank everyone who made this happen! ❤ #Repost @capitals.. So great that tonight Fatima Al Ali, a hockey player from the UAE, got to meet her favorite hockey player @aleksandrovechkinofficial! The #Caps and @etihadairways brought Fatima to Washington, D.C. as part of their #HockeyIsForEveryone initiatives this year. Tomorrow Fatima will skate with the team after practice. #Caps #CapsHIFE #ovi #gr8 #fatima_al_ali #dreamscometrue #bestplayer #WashingtonCapitals #washingtondc #washington #dc #usa #speechless