A Maccabiah gold medal hero and a 17-year-old debutante had the honour of carrying the flags for Team GB at Thursday’s 19th Maccabiah Games gala opening ceremony in front of 32,000 spectators at Jerusalem’s newly enlarged Teddy Stadium.
Along with Team GB manager David Pinnick, long distance runner Richard Goodman and badminton player Aimee Shulton carried the Maccabi GB flag, the Union flag and the flag of Maccabi, respectively.
One of Maccabi GB’s most respected members, Pinnick was watched by his wife Alex, who is head of the junior management team, daughters Abbi, Team GB (swimming manager), Talia (junior management team), Jessica (open netball) and son-in-law, Neil Taylor (junior rugby manager).
Goodman is one of Maccabi GB’s most successful Maccabians ever – and he is still only 20 years old. A talented long distance runner, he returned home from the 18th Maccabiah Games with two gold medals – in the 1,500m and 3,000m – as a 16-year-old. He has previously won the ‘Young Sportsperson of the Year’ at the Maccabi GB Sports Awards.
Shulton, 17, is a promising badminton player making her debut for Maccabi GB at an International tournament.
She has been playing since she was 10 years old and has been coached by Nora Perry, former badminton world
champion. Aimee specialises in doubles and has represented Essex in county matches on several occasions, winning numerous trophies for club and school.
Her talents also extend to being a qualified badminton coach and official. Maccabi GB’s Head of Delegation, David Kyte, said: “Having been fortunate enough to hold the flag at the 18th Maccabiah Games in 2009, I know that it is one of those moments that you dream of.
"Representing British Jewry, leading the team out holding the flag proudly in front of so many people and a global television audience doesn’t come to many athletes. It was a defining moment in my sporting career and it was a defining moment in my life."