Guide to Israel's Olympic Team: Michael Kolganov

Kayak 500m

michael kolganov 224 (photo credit: Courtesy/OCI)
michael kolganov 224
(photo credit: Courtesy/OCI)
The 33-year-old Kolganov will carry the Israel flag in the opening ceremony, an honor he fully deserves. These will be Kolganov's third Olympics and expectations are no where near as high as they were in previous Games. He claimed Israel's only medal at the Sydney Olympics eight years ago, a bronze in the K1 500m event, and almost became the first Israeli to claim two medals in the same Games, finishing in fourth position in the 1,000m race. Kolganov, who made aliya from Tashkent, Uzbekistan, in 1995, only barely qualified for the Beijing Olympics, with the Belgian Canoeing Association vacating a place in the K1 500 meter Olympic competition just two weeks ago. He is also a two-time K1 200m world champion (1998 and 1999) and was also a silver medalist in the 500m competition in 1998.