HISTORY MAKER RECALLS WHERE IT ALL BEGAN
Jul 30, 2018
As Jordan prepares to send a competitive delegation to the Asian Games later this month, one history maker takes a look back at where it all began.
Samer Kamal was a part of the 32-member Jordan delegation that first took part in the Asian Games back in 1986 in Seoul, 25 years after the first Asian Games were held in 1951.
More than 5,000 athletes took part from 27 countries, with the organisers using the event to showcase their state of readiness for the Olympic Games that would be held in South Korea two years later.
Team Jordan took part in Shooting, Athletics, Basketball and Taekwondo, and it was in the latter that they excelled.
Three silver medals were won by Ahmad Ali, Tawfeeq Nweser and Samer Kamal and one bronze was picked up by Tareq Al Lababedi.
It saw Jordan finish third in the Taekwondo medals table behind Indonesia and the host nation and signalled the Kingdom’s arrival on the sport’s global stage.
“I was honoured to be the first silver medallist in Jordan history at the Asian Games,” said Samer. “We won four medals which was an incredible achievement at the time and put us up there with Korea at that time.”
The victory also gave Samer and his teammate Ihsan Abu Sheikha the confidence to go on and qualify to the Olympics where Taekwondo was included for the first time as a show sport.
The pair made more more history by winning bronze medals.
The Asian Games will be held in Indonesia from August 18 – September 3.