CAIRO — The sports activities authorities in Egypt have been the subject of debate due to the dearth of applicable coaching for gamers who participated within the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Video games, along with some Egyptian gamers representing different nations through the competitions.
In an Aug. 8 TV interview, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi confused his nation’s resolve to assist athletes to lift Egypt’s identify excessive in worldwide tournaments. “We’re working to advertise sports activities in colleges and universities, and I salute all Egyptian households who’re engaged on enhancing their youngsters’s abilities,” he stated.
Sisi additionally introduced that the athletes who gained Olympic medals might be honored by naming a number of roads and bridges after them.
Egypt gained six completely different Olympic medals within the Tokyo video games, for the primary time within the historical past of its Olympic participation. Feryal Ashraf gained the gold medal in karate and Ahmed al-Gendy gained the silver of the trendy pentathlon for males, which is the primary Egyptian medal within the trendy pentathlon competitions. Saif Issa and Hedaya Malak gained the bronze in taekwondo, and Muhammad Ibrahim “Kisho” gained the lads’s wrestling bronze medal. Gianna Farouk gained the ladies’s bronze within the ladies’s kumite’s -61kg occasion.
In the course of the match, a number of Egyptian gamers represented different nations, together with Fares Hassouna who gained a gold medal in weightlifting for Qatar, as the primary gold medal within the historical past of the Gulf nation, along with Shadi al-Nahhas who performed on behalf of Canada in judo competitions, and Amr al-Jaziri who represented the US within the trendy pentathlon within the Olympics, after representing Egypt within the final three Olympic rounds.
Athletes and analysts consider that athletes are leaving Egypt and representing different nations because of the lack of economic means and the dearth of assist wanted for coaching.
Egyptian weightlifting champion Mohamed Ehab informed Al-Monitor, “Egyptian athletes are compelled to hunt the citizenship of one other nation or symbolize it [in world competitions] within the absence of assist in their very own nation.”
He expects the scenario to vary sooner or later in mild of Sisi’s curiosity in supporting athletes, by growing the worth of fabric rewards and naming amenities and roads after the champions.
Ehab stated that firms and establishments will search to sponsor the champions if the state helps native video games. He stated he obtained a sponsorship contract that might be legitimate till the Paris 2024 Olympics.
He believes that any participant has the suitable to symbolize any nation so long as it sponsored and certified him from the start.
On Aug. 7, Ehab had posted on Fb his objection to “some nations’ exploitation of the dearth of economic capabilities of different nations to naturalize gamers who competed beneath their flag and have become worldwide gamers.”
Ibrahim Hassouna, father and coach of Qatar’s gold medalist Fares Hassouna, stated in a TV interview Aug. 1, “Fares was ready for competitors 5 years in the past in Qatar with the goal of acquiring the gold medal.”
Ibrahim famous, “I agreed that Fares would play on behalf of Qatar, as a result of no official from the Egyptian Weightlifting Federation contacted us.”
Ibrahim accused the Egyptian Weightlifting Federation of corruption due to “the appointment of coaches primarily based on ‘pleasantries’ moderately than competence. He added that his son traveled to work in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, earlier than finally settling in Qatar.
Hesham Hatab, head of the Egyptian Olympic Committee, denied in a phone intervention on Sada Al-Balad channel Aug. 10 Ibrahim’s allegations concerning the presence of nepotism within the Egyptian Weightlifting Federation.
In the meantime, Mahmoud Mahgoub, head of the non permanent committee for the administration of the Egyptian Weightlifting Federation, confirmed in televised statements July 28 that Egypt has restricted capabilities to spend on weightlifters. Mahgoub famous, “Hassouna [Fares] traveled to play with Qatar, and some huge cash initially devoted to soccer golf equipment was spent on coaching him.”
In a parallel context, Egyptian analysts consider that there’s administrative and monetary misconduct from the Egyptian Olympic Committee and the sports activities federations in Egypt, because of the lack of coaching of gamers earlier than the beginning of the Olympic competitions.
Sports activities analyst and journalist Mohammed el-Gazzar informed Al-Monitor, “Soccer enjoys extra assist in Egypt than different sports activities, and this impacts the assist for gamers in [other] particular person video games, regardless of their victory in championships.”
Gazzar stated, “Sports activities in Egypt have struggled attributable to corruption and monetary crises, to the extent that the Worldwide Olympic Committee suspended the Egyptian Weightlifting Federation attributable to a doping difficulty, which value Egypt two medals that have been anticipated to be gained by Ehab and Sarah Samir within the Tokyo Olympics.”
In December 2019, the Courtroom of Arbitration for Sport confirmed the suspension of the Egyptian Weightlifting Federation for 2 years attributable to doping points.
Gazzar believes that Sisi’s assist for sports activities sends a message of reassurance to athletes that situations will enhance sooner or later and the mandatory assist might be secured.
In the meantime, journalist Karim Ramzy stated on Ontime Sport channel Aug. 10, “Funds allotted to assist completely different sports activities are erratically distributed, with much less funds allotted to coaching gamers.”
He famous “complaints by [Egyptian] gamers through the Tokyo Olympics about not receiving applicable coaching earlier than collaborating within the competitors, along with the dearth of sponsors.”
Ramzy expressed his hopes that “Egypt ought to have an excellent place in sports activities and reap extra medals sooner or later.”
In a telephone interview on Al-Hadath Al-Youm channel Aug. 3, Egyptian wrestler Haitham Fahmy complained concerning the officers’ slackening, as wrestlers weren’t correctly educated. Coaching for the Olympics started just one month forward of the competitors, he stated, noting that officers knowledgeable them that “participation within the Olympics solely serves honorable illustration moderately than acquiring a medal.”
Sherif al-Aryan, secretary-general of the Egyptian Olympic Committee, stated in a July 25 TV interview, “About 200 million Egyptian kilos [$12.7 million] have been spent to completely equip the [Egyptian] group [at the Tokyo Olympic Games].” With a complete of 132 rivals, this quantities to a mean of about $96,000 per athlete. Nationwide spending varies drastically from one nation to the subsequent, with some spending excess of Egypt. For instance, within the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, the UK spent roughly $1 million per athlete.
In different statements Aug. 8, Aryan praised the efficiency of the Egyptian group, explaining that it was a results of good coaching and energy. He famous that the Egyptian Olympic Committee broke the earlier Egyptian file by reaping six Olympic medals.