Netball is her escape from stress
At the tender age of 15, Dahlia Asni has a lot on her young shoulders.
Not only does she balance her schoolwork with netball training, but the CHIJ Secondary School (Toa Payoh) student has to care for her cancer-stricken grandmother as well.
But Dahlia, who stands at 1.72 metres, is taking it all in her long stride.
And she admits that going for training and playing matches help relieve the stress.
Says Dahlia: "Whenever I go for training, all the stress suddenly just goes away. When I'm playing netball, I feel like nothing else matters except for me and the game. It's like an escape for me."
Dahlia explains that she has an older sister, 17, preparing to enter university, and two younger siblings who are 12 and 3 respectively, so the responsibility of caring for her grandmother falls squarely on her.
She says: "My older sister is preparing for university so I understand how busy she is, and my other siblings are too young to help out. So I was the only choice.
"Sometimes, I have to accompany my grandmother to KK Women's and Children's Hospital before I go to school. Then I will go for training in the afternoon and back to the hospital again.
"Some days I'll be back at home by 11pm, and then it's an early day at school the next day. It is so tiring."
But the young netballer doesn't let her problems at home affect her desire to help her team.
Her netball teacher-in-charge, Eng Wee Keng, 38, says that other than her height, Dahlia's determination makes her a fighter on and off the court.
He says: "She kept the situation about her grandmother to herself, and it wasn't until they lost a game quite badly and had a team talk did she reveal what she was going through.
"But to play as well as she did with her own pressures, even when the team lost, I admire her hard work and dedication to her studies and the team."
The Goal Defender is one of the tallest players in the team, and with her guarding the post, CHIJ were able to win last year's C Division title.
The only blemish in this year's B Division was that they were pipped 31-27 by Methodist Girls' School in the final.
With the season over and her grandmother's condition more stable, Dahlia plans to focus more on doing well for her exams.
She also has her sights on one day donning the national netball jersey but admits that her studies could stop her from doing that.
She says: "I've been asked by my coach before to try out for the Under-17 squad, but I turned it down because I was scared that it would affect my studies.
"I don't think I'll ever put more into netball than school, as much as I love the sport. But I'm still young, so maybe that will change one day and I'll get to chase that dream."