Israel Olympic Chief Says Representation At Games 'Very Important' For Israel
At the start of every Winter Olympics, "the fact that Israel sends a delegation to the Games and the identity of its representatives are almost unanimously received by bewilderment, and often even ridicule, from the general public," according to Allon Sinai of the JERUSALEM POST. Olympic Committee of Israel Elite Sport Department Dir Gili Lustig said, "It is very important that the State of Israel is represented in winter sports and at every Olympic Games. Sport is our best ambassador. This shouldn’t even be questioned." Lustig believes that "the real issue lies elsewhere." Lustig: "The important question is in which events we should be investing our time and money." That event "is figure skating," a sport that can be practiced 365 days a year. Israel has several facilities across the country and has "had representation in this event in the Olympics for the past 20 years." Israel "sent five representatives to the Sochi Olympics." Israel "has never sent more than five athletes to a Winter Olympics," with the delegations in '02 and '06 also numbering five members (JERUSALEM POST, 2/19).