Zubari, Davidovich set to sail

Muki, Richter eye podium.

Israeli windsurfer Maayan Davidovich begins her participation in the Rio Olympics today. (photo credit: Courtesy)
Israeli windsurfer Maayan Davidovich begins her participation in the Rio Olympics today.
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Israel’s windsurfers open their account in Rio 2016 on Monday. Three of Israel’s seven Olympic medals have come in windsurfing and Shahar Zubari and Maayan Davidovich believe they can add to that tally over the next week.
The men and the women will each contest 12 races before the top 10 compete in the medal race on August 14 to determine final positions.
Zubari will be taking part in his third Olympics, winning a bronze medal in Beijing 2008.
The 29-year-old hasn’t won a medal in a major competition since the European Championships three years ago, but nevertheless remains confident he can end that drought in Rio.
“I expect to win a medal,” said Zubari.
Davidovich, 28, finished in 10th place in Beijing 2008, but lost out to Lee Korzits in the battle for a place in the London Games four years ago. She bounced back and took two consecutive bronze medals at the World Championships before securing her place in Rio.
“My goal is of course to win a medal. I will do my best and hopefully that will be enough,” said an optimistic Davidovich, who ended the past two global championships in 14th and 19th positions, respectively.
Also Monday, judoka Sagi Muki goes in search of a podium finish in the men’s under- 73 kilogram event. Medals haven’t been easy to come by for Muki since he scaled the top of the podium at the European Championships last summer in Baku, Azerbaijan.
His only significant medal of 2016 came in the Grand Slam event in Paris in February.
Complicating matters further is the back injury he has been dealing with in recent weeks, limiting him in training in the run-up to the Games.
Elsewhere, shooter Sergey Richter aims to make up for the disappointment of four years ago when he takes part in the 10-meter Air Rifle competition.
The 2013 European champion ended the event in ninth place in London 2012, coming within a single point of the final.
“I’m arriving in Rio in top form and unlike the previous Olympics, I’m also ready from a mental standpoint,” said Richter. “This is what I live for and this is what I train for. Anything short of a medal will be a disappointment.”
Israelis will also be in action in the pool once more on Monday.
Amit Ivry will take part in the 200-meter individual medley qualifiers. She reached the semifinals in the 200m IM at London 2012, ending the event in 13th place, the best-ever finish for an Israeli female swimmer at the Olympics.
After falling short of expectations in the 400m IM, Gal Nevo is slated to participate in the 200m butterfly heats on Monday ahead of his main event, the 200m IM.
Andrea Murez, who has struggled with sinusitis, will not take part in the 200m freestyle in the hope she can recover in time for the 50m and 100m free heats.