Getty Images

Egypt wants to be first African nation to host Olympics

Leave a comment

Egypt wants to become the first African nation to host the Olympics in 2032, one of its sports officials said Tuesday, according to Egyptian media.

There are no official bids yet for the 2032 Games, which are expected to be awarded to a host city in 2025.

Egypt unsuccessfully bid for the Olympics with Alexandria in 1916 (canceled due to World War I) and showed interest with Alexandria in 1936 and 1940, according to the OlyMADMen. Cairo was a candidate city for the 2008 Olympics but did not make the list of five finalists.

The closest an African bid came to getting the Olympics came in 2004, when Cape Town, South Africa, finished third behind Athens and Rome.

South African sports officials talked about a possible 2024 Olympic bid in 2015, but that did not come to fruition.

The India Olympic Association said in April that it planned to bid for the 2032 Games. India is the world’s second-most populous nation with 1.3 billion people.

India has never been an Olympic bid finalist but has held the Commonwealth Games. In 2010, the New Delhi-hosted multi-sport event came under fire for construction delays, poor infrastructure, unsanitary athletes’ village conditions and corruption.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

MORE: Austria drops 2026 Winter Olympic bid, leaving 5 options

Egypt’s armless table tennis player ‘a legend,’ Paralympic opponent says

Getty Images
1 Comment

Egyptian armless table tennis player Ibrahim Hamadtou was YouTube famous before the Paralympics. The awe is shared by at least one of his peers in Rio.

Hamadtou was swept in both of his Class 6 singles matches in his first Paralympics at age 43 last week, including his opener to Great Britain’s David Wetherill.

“He’s a legend in table tennis,” Wetherill, also YouTube famous, said of the only armless player in the competition, according to Agence France-Presse. “I was feeling the pressure, a bit jittery. [Then] you see people like Ibrahim, and you can’t possibly feel nervous: he puts things in perspective, the things he can do.

“In table tennis it is skill versus skill, and I know I won today, but I think he has demonstrated far more skill than I have just now,” Wetherill said, according to the English Table Tennis Federation.

Hamadtou lost his arms above the elbow due to a train accident at age 10.

“After the accident, he stayed shut up at home for three years. He wouldn’t go out,” his coach said, according to AFP.

Hamadtou turned to sport, first soccer, and then table tennis. He said he started the latter at age 13, reportedly taking three years to learn and adapt. He flicks the ball up with his toes and holds the paddle between his teeth.

“I was trying first to use the bat under the arm, and I also tried using other things that weren’t working so well,” Hamadtou said, according to the International Table Tennis Federation. “Finally, I tried using my mouth.”

Though Hamadtou went winless in Rio, he doesn’t see it that way.

“Not all defeats are defeats,” Hamadtou said, according to the International Paralympic Committee. “Sometimes you lose, but you actually win because you have added to your experience, you have added to your knowledge. Today I added to my knowledge.”

MORE: Rio Paralympics broadcast schedule