Tag Archives: Olympic Games

Rio 2016: Zahra Nemati – Iranian archer

Born in April 1985 in Kerman, Iran, Nemati took up taekwondo when she was only eight. Ten years later, in 2003 she suffered a spinal injury during a road accident and both of her legs were paralyzed. After spending two months in the hospital, she returned home in a wheelchair. This would have been the end of a sporting career for most people, but not for Nemati.

On Friday August 5th, 2016, Nemati lead Iranian athletes as flag bearer during the opening ceremony of the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. She is the only Iranian woman ever to have won a Paralympic gold medal and the only Iranian athlete who has qualified for both the 2016 Olympics and the 2016 Paralympics.

She is also the only Iranian athlete who has received the coveted Sport Accord’s Spirit of Sport Individual Award in 2013 and the first Iranian athlete to be named athlete of the year by the International Olympics Committee.

Nevertheless, she is not the first woman from Iran to participate at the Olympic games as flag bearer, as stated in many news articles. In fact, in 1996 at the Atlanta Olympics, sports shooter Lida Fariman was the first woman to lead Iran’s contingent. At the time, Fariman was the first woman from Iran to participate at the Olympics since the Islamic revolution of 1979.

In 2008, at the Beijing Olympics, rower Homa Hosseini (women’s single sculls) also led the Iranian delegation, as well as alpine skier Marjan Kalhor (slalom and giant slalom); she was Iran’s flag bearer in 2010 at the Vancouver Winter Olympics.

Related article:
The Guardian | Trail-blazer Zahra Nemati wins hearts and minds with stirring effort in archery

I am posting daily updates on Iranian athletes’ performances and events at Rio 2016 Olympics here: The other Iran | Iran in Rio 2016

Sources: IranWire, Hindustan TimesBUSTLE, NBC Olympics, NBC News, worldarchery.org

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Rio 2016: Mahsa Javar – Iranian rower (women’s single sculls)

Mahsa Javar, born 1994 in Zanjan, is competing in Women’s Single Sculls at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games on Saturday, August 6th (9:30am local time).

She won a bronze medal in Lightweight Women’s Quadruple Sculls at the 2014 Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea and a silver medal in the same discipline at the 2013 Asian Championships in Lu’an, China.

Photos: Mahsa Javar training for the Olympic Games at Azadi Sport Complex, Tehran – July 2016

Sources: ISNA, Wikipedia | Mahsa Javar (in Persian)

Rio 2016: Iran men’s volleyball team realise Olympic dream after 52 years of waiting (Photos)

Iran achieved a historic feat as they earned their first-ever Olympic Games qualification, after they handed world champion Poland their first defeat in the tournament 3-1 (25-20, 25-18, 20-25, 34-32) at Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium.

Hosts Japan were joined by the three best ranked Asian teams (Iran, Australia and China), the second and third teams from the European Olympic Qualification Tournament (France and Poland), as well as the second placed teams from the South American and NORCECA Olympic Qualification Tournaments (Venezuela and Canada).

Mohammad Mousavi was the tournament’s best blocker, Saeid Marouf was best setter and Milad Ebadipour was best receiver.

The foundation of the current Iranian team was created nearly 10 years ago. At that time, Iran was 26th in the FIVB Rankings, behind other Asian teams. Today, Iran is ranked 8th in the world  and, as the strongest Asian team, they have won the 2011 and 2013 Asian Volleyball Championships and the 2014 Asian Games.

Sources: FIVB, FIVB Men World Olympic Qualification Tournament (WOQT) Japan 2016, WOQT Japan 2016, The Japan Times, Wikipedia | Iran men’s national volleybal team, FIVB World Rankings (2015.10), WOQT Japan 2016 (Iran-Venezuela), WOQT Japan 2016 (Iran-Poland), Tasnim News Agency (Iran-Poland), Tasnim News Agency (Iran-Japan), WOQT Japan 2016 (Iran-France)

Rio 2016: Iran secured three table tennis spots (Photos)

The 2016 Asian Table Tennis Olympic Qualification Tournament was held this April in Hong Kong, with a total of eleven places available in each of the Men’s Singles and Women’s Singles events, divided into East Asia, South East Asia, South Asia, West Asia and Middle Asia Zones.

Neda Shahsavari and Nima Alamian got two direct spots to Rio 2016, as winners in the Middle Asia Zone. Noshad Alamiyan had to face his brother Nima in the finals and lost. However, in the second stage, he recorded a 4-1 success over Hong Kong’s Jiang Tianyi, securing Iran’s third Olympic spot.

Rio 2016 will mark Nima Alamian’s first appearance at the Olympic Games. Noshad Alamiyan and Neda Shahsavari will participate for the second time. Shahsavari became in London 2012 the first woman to represent Iran in table tennis at the Olympic Games.

Earlier this year, the Iranian women’s team surprised many as they got the gold medal in the third division of the 54th World Team Table Tennis Championships in Malaysia. The trio formed by Mahjobeh Omrani, Neda Shahsavari and Maryam Samet recorded a three matches to nil win against Uzbekistan.

The World Team Championships are played on a “Division” system with 24 teams in each of the first three divisions while all other teams form a 4th Division. The first division is also the Championship Division as only teams in this division can compete for the title of World Champions.

Photos: Iranian table tennis players at 2016 ITTF Asia Olympic Games Qualification Tournament and Iran women’s table tennis team at 2016 World Team Table Tennis Championship in Malysia

Sources: Mehr News Agency (MNA) 1, MN 2, ittf.com 1, Flicker | ITTF World, hktta.org.hk, ittf.com 2MNA 3, ittf.com 3, IRNA, perfectwttc2016.com.my