The History of the Games: Israeli domination begins at 10th Maccabiah

By ARIEL ZIRULNICK
July 1, 2009 23:56

The tenth Maccabiah included a stunning 2,694 athletes from 34 countries, making it one of the world's biggest sports events. The games took place during a period of significant international achievement: an Israeli was crowned Miss Universe and the Maccabi Tel Aviv basketball team had won the Euro Cup. The Israeli people felt like they had arrived, after a period of doubt and uncertainty after the 1973 war. Competitions were held across the country. Fifty five Maccabiah records were trumped and Israel led in almost all the team sports. Organizers made a big effort to incorporate social and Zionist elements into the games by planning parties and other celebratory events as well as tours throughout the country. They brought together the participants of the first Maccabiah for a reunion. The growth of Maccabiah necessitated greater attention to international rules and regulations, so the organizes ran professional courses in advance of the games to teach judges and coaches the ins and outs of international sports. A number of seminars on sports medicine and physical education also were held.


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