The Israeli Athletics team for the 2020 Olympics will include 7 athletes as they each hope to win a medal in Tokyo this summer for the blue-and-white. Lonah Chemtai Salpeter is arguably the biggest name Israel has to offer in this category as she has shown her ability to win medals over the past few years leading up to the Olympics with a gold medal in the 10,000 Meters at the 2018 European Championships in Berlin as well as a gold medal in the World Marathon Majors in Tokyo in 2020.
This summer is Lonah’s big chance to bring home a medal as she is at the peak of her career at the age of 32, heading into the biggest event over the course of the last 5 years that the athletics world has to offer.
With her husband Dan by her side as her personal coach, she hopes to achieve glory in the country of the rising sun as she will participate in multiple categories: The 5000 Meters, 10,000 Meters and the Marathon, which is the category where she may have the highest potential to reach the podium.
30-year old Maor Tiyouri will be participating in the Women’s Marathon along with Chemtai Salpeter. Tiyouri won the silver medal at the Maccabiah Games both in 2009 in the 1500 Meters and in the 3000 Meters while in 2013 she added a bronze medal at the European Games in Baku in 2015 in the mixed team category.
Israeli Women’s athletics has an additional runner competing this summer in 27-year old Selamawit Dagnachew Teferi as she will be participating in the 5000 Meters and 10000 Meters. Dagnachew has won the Israeli championship in the 800 Meters in 2017 along with winning the 1500 Meters in 2019 and hopes to be a pleasant surprise for her Israeli supporters.
In the Men’s Marathon, Israel will have 3 runners including Haimro Alame (31-years old), Girmaw Amare (33-years old) and Marhu Teferi (28-years old). Teferi, who is married to Selamawit Dagnachew was able to qualify for the 2016 Olympics and finished in 74th place out of 155 runners in the Men’s Marathon. Teferi will hope to improve on his previous Olympic Marathon and get even closer to the podium.
For Amare and Alame this will be their first time competing in the Olympics. Alame holds the Israeli record in the men’s 10,000 Meters and hopes to break more Israeli and Olympic records this summer in Tokyo.
Diana Vaisman will represent the blue and white in the 100 Meters. The 22-year old holds the all-time Israeli record for the 100 Meters sprint breaking Esther Roth Shahamorov’s record set int the 1972 Munich Games. Diana is coached by her mother Irina who herself is a former athlete. Hopes are high for Vaisman and along with this being her first Olympic journey, Israeli fans should get excited for this new rising star.
In the 3000 Meters Steeplechase Israel will be represented by Adva Cohen. The 25-year old has impressed in many competitions over the past 5 years and holds the 2017 title of Israel Athletic Association’s National Track and Field Breakthrough Athlete of the Year.
In the field events Israel has one representative, Hanna Knyazyeva-Minenko from Maccabi Tel Aviv, who will take part in the Women’s Triple Jump. Minenko had represented the Ukraine up until 2012 and switched allegiances starting in 2013.
The 31-year old was able to qualify for the Olympics at the last minute as her second to last qualifying jump was good enough to meet the Olympic qualification criteria. Minenko will be entering the Olympics with many achievements to her name including medals at the European Championships and World Championships over the past number of years. At the 2012 London Games, she was able to reach the finals in the Triple Jump and will hope to carry that experience into the upcoming summer in Tokyo. Israeli hopes for an athletics medal is partially pointed towards Minenko as she is a seasoned and experienced competitor who the local fans in the Holy Land have learned to love over the years thanks to her dedication and achievements.