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Controversial cleric’s ‘modesty call’ to Turkish volleyball team bounces back at him

Following a victory by the Turkish women's volleyball team over China at the Tokyo Olympics, the all-too-familiar debate on women’s decency and clothes raised its head when a cleric urged the players to observe modesty in dress and behavior.
Team Turkey celebrates after defeating Team China during the Women's Preliminary - Pool B on day two of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Ariake Arena on July 25, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan.

The 3-0 victory over China by Turkey's “Sultans of the Net,” the national women’s volleyball team, on July 25 at the Tokyo Olympics lifted national spirits and gave Turks a much-awaited victory on the international sports scene after a series of disappointments in soccer, the country’s most popular sport.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called the team captain, Eda Erdem Dundar, to congratulate her and the team and promised to watch their next match, against Italy, which is ranked among the best globally. The Sultans lost 3-1. All eyes are now on their next game — against the United States — scheduled to take place July 29.

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