Monday,23 July, 2018
Current issue | Issue 1269, (5 - 11 November 2015)
Monday,23 July, 2018
Issue 1269, (5 - 11 November 2015)

Ahram Weekly

He speared it

Egypt’s javelin best Ihab Abdel-Rahman won the Mohammed Bin Rashid Al-Maktoum Creative Sports Award, reports Ghada Abdel-Kader

Al-Ahram Weekly

Egyptian star javelin thrower Ihab Abdel-Rahman has won the Mohammed Bin Rashid Al-Maktoum Creative Sports Award.

Nominees for the Creative Sports Award, a contest held every year, were from African and Arab countries. There were several awards categories -- the Arab Social Media Award, Arabic Language, World Peace, and Creative Sports. “Only one winner won the prize in each category,” Executive Director and general supervisor of the national teams at the Egyptian Athletics Federation (EAF) Ahmed Al-Wardani, said.

Crown Prince of Dubai Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum launched the Mohammed Bin Rashid Creative Sports Awards on 30 May 2007. The award honours individuals, teams and establishments that demonstrate creativity in the field of sports.

Abdel-Rahman, 26, who has been playing in Ahly Sporting Club since 2006, thanked the club for choosing him as a candidate for the award.

“The Ahly board of directors decided to pick me especially after my latest achievement, my silver medal in the IAAF World Championship in Beijing, because it was the first medal ever won by an Egyptian in the 105-year history of the IAAF,” Abdel-Rahman told Al-Ahram Weekly.

“Ahly and the EAF backed me up and stood by my side. The award is for all my results in 2014 and 2015,” he said. “I was so confused,” he added, smiling. “I was so happy and flying out of joy and happiness. I can’t believe this is true. It’s my first grand award.”

“EAF President Walid Ata flew to the United Arab of Emirates to present Abdel-Rahman’s credentials himself,” Al-Wardani added. “This is the first time an Egyptian athlete wins such a prize in sports.”

The awards ceremony will be on 20 January in Dubai.

Abdel-Rahman took an unprecedented silver medal in this year’s IAAF championship with a throw of 88.99 metres. Kenyan gold medalist Julius Yego threw 92.72 metres. Only 3.73 metres separated the gold from the silver. It was the first time two African athletes had won first and second place in the event in the IAAF whose edition this year was held in Beijing National Stadium from 24-26 August.

Abdel-Rahman then won the gold medal at the All-Africa Games, and took another gold with a throw of 80.27 metres at the 19th Senior Arab Athletics Championships in Manama, Bahrain, held from 24-27 April.

Abdel-Rahman’s dream came true when he qualified for the 2016 Rio Olympics Games when he hurled the spear 83.14 meters at the Doha IAAF Diamond League.

Abdel-Rahman was the world’s No 1 in 2014, topping the world javelin ranking for more than a year. He took first place and the gold medal with a throw of 89.21 metres in May 2014 in the Shanghai Diamond League. The distance had not been achieved in 15 years in the IAAF world championships or Olympics Games.

He took the silver medal with a throw of 83.59 metres at the 19th African Senior Championships in 2014. Then, Abdel-Rahman represented Africa at the 2014 IAAF Continental Cup held from 13-14 September in Marrakech, Morocco. The tournament involved teams from Africa, the Americas, Asia-Pacific and Europe. African champion and 2014 world leader Abdel-Rahman claimed the gold medal with a throw of 85.44 metres, making history by becoming the first non-European winner of the men’s javelin at a World or Continental Cup.

Abdel-Rahman will travel to Finland on 10 November to start training.

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