Sela sparkles in Olympic opener - Day One review from Rio 2016


Dudi Sela produced the one ray of light on a day of disappointment for Israel at the Rio Olympics.

Eliminated in the opening round at Wimbledon last month, tennis star Sela impressive in his first-ever Olympics - he is the first tennis player to represent Israel at the Olympics since 1992.

He crucial secured a break in each set to beat Damir Dzumhur 6-4, 6-4 and move into the second round of the Men's Singles.

But there was disappoint for Israel in gymnastics, athletics and swimming.

Alex Shalitov missed out on qualification in gymnastics. He scored 14.066 on the horizontal bar and 13.5 on the floor exercise but he was penalised for a series of errors.

Shira Rishoni failed to progress in the Women's 48kg event. She was disqualified in her match against Ukrainian Maryna Cherniak of Bulgaria to mark a disappointing Olympic debut.

In the pool, Gal Nevo failed in his bid to reach the of the Men's 400m Individual Medley after touching home in 4:18:29.

He will be hoping for better luck when he returns to action at the Olympic pool on Wednesday.

Amit Ivry was another Israeli to miss out on place in the final - her time of 59.42 in the Women's 100m Butterfly was too slow to progress. She finished 27th overall.

Ivry, Zohar Hen Shikler, Keren Siebner and Andrea Murez received a warm welcome in the Women's 4x100m freestyle relay - they were entered following a last-minute disqualification for Belarus. But they finished the eighth heat in 3:14:97.

Prior to the action, the Israeli delegation were involved in a bizarre argument with members of the Lebanese continent who prevented from boarding a shuttle bus to the Opening Ceremony, laid on by Olympic officials.

Israel sailing coach Udi Gal was involved in the exchanged which he described as "something that is unacceptable for security and representation reasons".

He went on to say: ""We insisted that we board the bus designated for us, and if the Lebanese refuse [to share the shuttle], they should leave the bus."

It was reported that one of the Lebanese officials attempted to obstruct the door while Israeli athletes tried to board the vehicle.

Organisers acted quickly to ensure another bus was at hand for the Israelis to board.

Israel has sent a record delegation of 47 athletes to Rio, competing across 17 sports.

Share via

Want more from the JC?

To continue reading, we just need a few details...

Want more from
the JC?

To continue reading, we just
need a few details...

Get the best news and views from across the Jewish world Get subscriber-only offers from our partners Subscribe to get access to our e-paper and archive