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Israel Pins Hopes on Wins in the Paris Olympics

It was three months ago when Israeli Inbar Yanir became a world champion in Judo and it seems that since then, achievements for Israelis in sports have been on a roll. Since the start of 2023, Israeli athletes won three gold, two silver and three bronze medals in world championships in Olympic sports. This has already been the most successful year in Israel’s sports history, and more is to come.

But with this success, expectations grow ahead of the Paris Olympic Games next year. After Tokyo – where Israelis won two gold medals and two others, can the Israeli delegation do better?

There are many factors at play that had contributed to past achievements. But the difference between sports and athletes, demands a closer look at the chances Israel’s Olympic team has, to succeed.

The Rythmic Gymnastic team won first place last week, in the world championship and although gold medalist Linoy Ashram has already retired, the medals just keep on coming.

After the teams from Russia and Belarus were kept away in the wake of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the participation of competitors from those countries is expected to be low, since the policy of the organizers is to allow athletes to compete but not delegations from those two countries. This puts Israel at an advantage having now become the strongest team in the world.

The team is the most talented yet and is the strongest candidate to win a medal for Israel. But there can be no mistakes made in Paris. This is a field that depends on uncompromised precision and a momentary loss of concentration or coordination, could shatter the dream after years of hard work.

Daria Atamanov at just 17, already stands out as one of the best in the world, when she won the European championship in 2022. After being injured and taking time off to heal, her comeback last week proved especially meaningful.

The women’s surfing team is also potentially a gold winner next year after winning both the gold and silver medals in the last world championship although only one team member will be allowed to compete.

In judo too, the women are expected to shine. Inbar Lanir, the world champion in her class, proved she was able to win any adversary but success also depends on luck of the draw and who and at what point she will be competing against. Lanir also tends to take chances that can become costly.

Raz Hershko came home with bronze from the world championship and has struggled against some of her adversaries. Her success depends more on the luck of the draw.

Among the men, Peter Paltchik’s name stands out. The native Ukrainian won his first bronze meddle in the championship but it is difficult to predict how successful he will ultimately be in Paris.

There is of course the meteoric rise of marathon runner Maru Teferi who won a silver medal just this week, in the World Athletics Championship in Hungary, overtaking his opponents in the race’s final section. Teferi achieved a career-best performance with his first-ever medal at the World Championship and is the first Israeli distance-running athlete to do so. His previous best achievement was an 11th-place finish in last year’s championship held in Oregon.

Finally, Olympian gymnast Atem Dolgopyat will carry Israeli hopes with him when he travels to Paris. The 25-year-old is one of the most celebrated athletes in Israel’s history, Having won a gold medal for his floor routine at the European Artistic Gymnastics Championship last year, further extending his impressive title haul, which includes a historic gold medal at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, another gold in the European championship’s last edition in 2020, and two silver medals at the World Artistic Gymnastics Championships in 2017 and 2019.

Source: Y Net



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