As the Rio Paralympic Games get closer, more and more teams are being announced and on Saturday Jordan revealed their team for 2016. Ten athletes will represent Jordan in Rio, across three different sports.
Powerlifting is where most of the Jordan contingent lies and it holds their best hope of a medal in World Champion Mutaz Al Juneidi. In the 88kg category Al Juneidi holds the World Record from the 2014 World Championships. Six other athletes, Omar Sami Hamadeh Qarada, Abdelkareem Mohammad Ahmad Khattab, Haidarah Alkawamleh, Jamil Elshebli and Tharwh Tayseer Hamdan Alhajaj will join Al Juneidi in the Jordanian Powerlifting team.
Table Tennis is another common sport for Jordanians in the Paralympic Games with one team being added for Jordan. The Women’s team event has been successful for Jordan and they enter a team again with Maha Al Barghouthi, Khetam Abuawad and Tharwh Tayseer Hamdan Alhajaj, the first two of whom have medals in this event from Beijing.
The final competitor is Bilal Sa’ada who will compete in athletics in the T47 category through the 200m and 400m events. Jordan has only won one gold medal in Paralympic history held by Barghouthi when she won the singles title in Table Tennis.
Jordan has a phenomenal chance of winning their second ever gold in Al Juneidi, a world record holder, but Powerlifting could well be one of the most competitive sports in Rio, and Al Juneidi would be smart to not be complacent.