Zachy Hennessey
March 14

As the anticipation builds for the 2024 Paralympic Games in Paris, Israel’s contingent is shaping up to be a force to reckon with.

The squad has some of the same athletes who led Israel’s Paralympic team to earn six gold medals, two silvers and one bronze from the Tokyo Paralympics in 2021, setting some new records in this Olympic competition for people with physical disabilities. Eight of those nine medals were won in swimming.

Here’s a rundown of the 15 athletes who are so far confirmed to represent the country at the event this summer:

Goalball

Goalball is a Paralympic sport designed for athletes with visual impairments. The aim is to score goals by rolling a ball with bells into the opponents’ goal while defending your own.

The women’s goalball team is made up of six blind and visually impaired athletes: Gal Hamrani, Lihi Ben David, Elham Mahamid Rozin, Roni Ohayon, Ori Mizrahi and Noa Malka.

Israel’s women’s goalball team, with dogs Dylan and Rudy, from left: Roni Ohayon, Lihi Ben David, Gal Hamrani, Ori Mizrahi, Elham Mahamid Rozin, Noa Malka. Photo by Keren Isaacson
Israel’s women’s goalball team, with dogs Dylan and Rudy, from left: Roni Ohayon, Lihi Ben David, Gal Hamrani, Ori Mizrahi, Elham Mahamid Rozin, Noa Malka. Photo by Keren Isaacson

Hand Biking

Amit Hasdai: Overcoming paralysis on his right side, Hasdai’s resilience and determination drive him forward as he competes in hand biking events.

Kayaking

Talia Eilat: Formerly a dancer, Eilat’s journey to the Paralympics was shaped by a spinal aneurysm sustained during her late teenage years. Having dedicated herself to kayaking in the years since then, her skill on the water has secured her place at the upcoming competition in Paris.

Paralympian Talia Eilat. Photo by Ronit Cohen.
Paralympian Talia Eilat. Photo by Ronit Cohen

Rowing

Moran Samuel: A pediatric physiotherapist by trade, Samuel became a rowing powerhouse following a spinal cord aneurysm that left her lower limbs paralyzed. She is no stranger to the Paralympic stage: she participated at London, won a bronze medal in Rio and claimed a silver medal in Tokyo.

Israeli Paralympic team so far: 15 athletes heading to Paris
Paralympian Moran Samuel. Photo by Reuven Magnagey

Shmulik Daniel: After a serious injury sustained during operational activity, Daniel’s resilience shines through as he gears up for his second Paralympic appearance after a sixth-place finish in Tokyo.

Israeli Paralympic team so far: 15 athletes heading to Paris
Paralympic rower Shmulik Daniel. Photo by Reuven Magnagey

Shooting

Yulia Chernoy: Overcoming cerebral palsy, Chernoy’s determination and marksmanship make her a formidable competitor in shooting events.

Paralympian Yuliya Chernoy. Photo by Guy Strick.
Paralympian Yulia Chernoy. Photo by Guy Strick

Swimming

Ami Omer Dadaon: Confined to a wheelchair due to cerebral palsy, Dadaon’s accomplishments in the pool speak volumes, including two gold medals, a silver medal and a world record — all won at Tokyo Paralympics.

Paralympian Ami Omer Dadaon. Photo by Esnat Pliss Doar.
Paralympian Ami Omer Dadaon. Photo by Esnat Pliss Doar

Iyad Shalabi: Born deaf-mute and paralyzed in his lower limbs due to an early-childhood accident, Shalabi is the first Muslim Israeli to win a Paralympic or Olympic medal. His swimming prowess has earned him a place once again at the upcoming Paralympic Games.

Paralympian Iyad Shalabi. Photo by Esnat Pliss Doar.
Paralympian Iyad Shalabi. Photo by Esnat Pliss Doar

Taekwondo

Asaf Yasur: Despite losing both hands in a tragic accident, Yasur’s passion for taekwondo knows no bounds as he trains vigorously for his Paralympic debut.

Paralympian Asaf Yasur. Photo by Lilach Weiss Rosenberg.
Paralympian Asaf Yasur, right. Photo by Lilach Weiss Rosenberg

Adnan Milad: Overcoming the loss of his right hand due to electrocution, Milad’s determination and spirit make him a force to be reckoned with in taekwondo competitions.

Paralympian Adnan Milad. Photo by Lilach Weiss Rosenberg.
Paralympian Adnan Milad, left. Photo by Lilach Weiss Rosenberg

With each athlete bringing their unique story of resilience and determination, the Israeli Paralympic delegation is poised to inspire and captivate audiences on the world stage in Paris.

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