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Cubans filter in for Maccabiah

    The first overseas athletes have started to arrive in Israel ahead of the Maccabiah Games.

    Siblings Rafael and Roxana Gonzales flew into Ben Gurion airport yesterday. The archers are from Cuba who are competing at the Games for the first time. The delegation will also participate in table tennis, softball, karate and futsal.

    Before leaving Havana, Rafael Gonzales said: "We are excited to travel to Israel and be a part of Maccabiah history."

    Twenty countries, including Armenia, Mongolia, El Salvador and Nicaragua, join Cuba as newcomers to the competition.

    Maccabiah Games chairman Amir Peled said: "This will be a special moment for us to welcome the first competitors to the Games and the first-ever representatives of Cuba’s Jewish community."

    The Maccabiah opens on July 18 at Jerusalem’s newly enlarged Teddy Stadium.

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