ParaVolley to Paris

Abeer Anwar , Tuesday 6 Feb 2024

Egypt’s men’s team in ParaVolley are going to the 2024 Paralympic Games, reports Abeer Anwar

ParaVolley

 

This week, the Egyptian men’s national ParaVolley team won the gold medal at the African Zonal Championship held in Lagos, Nigeria, becoming the first Egyptian Para team to stamp their ticket to the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games,

Egypt’s men’s team blanked Morocco 3-0 (25-13, 25-11, 25-16) in the final at Teslim Balogun Stadium in Surulere, Lagos, to win the title for the 10th time and make it to the Paralympics. Egypt also took the silver medal at the World Cup held in Cairo last month.

Ehab Hassanein, president of ParaVolley Africa and the Arab Federation for Disability Sports, sent his greetings to the winning teams in Africa and praised the performance of the Sitting Volleyball teams in Lagos. “Egypt have always been pioneers in sitting volleyball since my days as a player. I hope the team will be able to win a medal at the coming Paralympics as they are well prepared for this. I am also very proud of the Rwandan women’s team who were able to qualify from Africa as well. I think that we are having growing teams and the performance of our African players is improving. Hope we will be able to attract more countries to our beloved sport, ParaVolley,” Hassanein, who is also an Egyptian Paralympic Committee board member, said.   

Hassanein said that at the end of the month Egypt will host the first Afro-Arab men’s club championship in Cairo under the sponsorship of Fahd Al-Fakeer, head of the Arab ParaVolley Committee, and the patronage of Minister of Youth and Sports Ashraf Sobhi “which will be an important event and a good opportunity for all participants to exchange expertise and get in contact with other teams. It also opens the way to attract more players to our sport.”

Rwanda women’s team took the gold medal for the fourth time in their history to qualify for the Paralympics.

Rwanda met a strong challenge from Kenya as the latter had their best performance in the tournament. However, the Rwandans proved in the end to be too much for their rivals in a 3-0 (25-12, 25-14, 25-21) victory in the women’s final.

Egypt had qualified for the final after defeating Algeria 3-0 in the semi-final. The national team obtained the full mark in the first round, defeating Morocco, Kenya and Nigeria by the same 3-0 score.

Mansour Al-Mohammadi, vice-president of ParaVolley Egypt, praised winning the African Championship and qualifying for the 2024 Paris Paralympics.

Al-Mohammadi said the Egyptian champions presented “outstanding levels” throughout the tournament matches. He thanked the country for the “great” support it gives to Paralympic sports and champions during the tenure of President Abdel- Fattah Al-Sisi, and minister Sobhi, He also praised the role played by the Egyptian Paralympic Committee, headed by Hossameddin Mustafa, and Egypt ParaVolley’s board of directors headed by Mustafa Abdel- Alim.

Three golden balls were presented to the Egyptian champions after winning the cup: Hisham Salah for best player, Sayed Moussa best spiker and Ahmed Fadl best blocker.

Egypt join hosts France, world champions Iran, Asian qualifier Kazakhstan, European champions Bosnia and Herzegovina, Pan American winners Brazil and World Cup qualifier Germany as the next to last team going to the Paris 2024 men’s tournament.

In the women’s game, Rwanda enter the field of teams comprised of hosts France, world champions Brazil, zone champions China, Italy and the United States, and World Cup qualifier Canada as the seventh squad to qualify for the quadrennial this year.


* A version of this article appears in print in the 8 February, 2024 edition of Al-Ahram Weekly

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