Maccabiah athletes did Hong Kong proud, says Gordon

Daniel Gordon has described Hong Kong’s 10-medal haul at the Maccabiah Games as a remarkable achievement.

Swimmer Ana Scherer was the delegation’s standout performer, bringing home four gold medals and two silvers.

Hong Kong took 16 athletes to Israel including a futsal team. They were also represented in fencing, tennis, squash, para-swimming and in Tae Kwon Do, where London 2012 Olympian Tal Moriah claimed a bronze.

Para-swimmer Aaron Zweig had led the squad into the Teddy Stadium at the Opening Ceremony.

Head of delegation Daniel Gordon said: "For our small delegation to win 10 medals is truly remarkable."

"In this Maccabiah, whilst our main focus was sport, we tried to take on a wider role as representatives of Hong Kong."

The squad enjoyed excellent support from a group of friends and family which included Zweig’s 92-year-old, Belma, who travelled from America to cheer on the delegation in Israel.

Indeed Gordon’s mum, Sue, was taken aback by the whole experience. "The Opening Ceremony was one of the most amazing nights of my life.

"To be in a stadium in Israel with your grandchildren, watching your son carry his adopted county’s flag amongst 9,000 other Jewish athletes was an emotional experience beyond all expectation.

"When Shimon Peres spoke about the centrality of Jerusalem to Jews and how this opening ceremony was living proof that the Nazis failed it became clear to me that the Maccabiah is not just a sporting event – it’s a symbol, perhaps the ultimate symbol, of Jewish identity.

"I have sung Hatikvah many times, but never with such emotion. Going to watch the first futsal game against Israel was another unique experience.

"It was again extremely moving to see the players stand side by side for the anthem and then hug each other warmly before the game begun. Jewish men from different parts of the world united and as one.

"If results were measured by vocal support, we would have won gold and when we scored our consolation goal we screamed as if we had won. Even the Israelis were pleased for us."

Last updated: 3:13pm, August 22 2013