22 December 2019 - 25 Kislev 5780 - כ"ה כסלו ה' אלפים תש"פ
Iran pulls out of deaf futsal event to avoid facing Israel E-mail

In yet another sporting incident relating to Iranian atheletes refusing to compete against Israel, this time Iran has boycotted the World Deaf Futsal Championships as it was in the same qualifying group as Israel.

The Iranians said they wouldn’t show up to the tournament in Switzerland unless they were moved to a different group, Israel’s Kan public broadcaster reported. When that didn’t happen, they withdrew from the competition entirely.

Israel and Iran were placed in the same group, along with Argentina and Sweden. The Iranian team had won the Asia Pacific Deaf Futsal Championships in February, an indoor sport similar to soccer with five players per side on a small court.

As Iran does not recognise the State of Israel as a legitimate country, Iranian sports teams have for several decades had a policy of not competing against Israelis.

Last month, the International Judo Federation (IJF) banned Iran from competition indefinitely over the country’s refusal to face Israeli competitors.

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