World Badminton Championship: Israeli player leaves after losing match

"I am glad that I can be here. It means that sports ranks above politics. I think it is a huge victory for sports," the Israeli player said.
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Israeli mens singles player Misha Zilberman immediately left the venue of the World Badminton Championship 2015 after losing in the first round against Taiwanese player Hsu Jen Hao here on Tuesday.

Zilberman was defeated by the Taiwanese shuttler in straight games 21-14, 21-14 during a match lasting 34 minutes.

The Badminton World Federation (BWF) had not allowed several journalists from interviewing him after the match, citing security reasons.

The BWF later distributed copies of an interview with Zilberman to the journalists at the Istora Stadiums media room.

"I have worked hard for an entire year to be able to qualify and come here to give my best performance. On one hand I was happy that I could be here, but on the other, I was disappointed as I could not demonstrate even 50 percent of my ability. I did not train in the past five days," he informed the BWF.

Zilberman expressed that he was glad to be able to participate in the World Badminton Championship 2015 in Jakarta and thanked the players that had supported him as well as the BWF that had helped him obtain a visa.

"I am glad that I can be here. It means that sports ranks above politics. I think it is a huge victory for sports," he affirmed.

On his Facebook account, Zilberman thanked all parties that had helped him participate in the championship.

Zilberman vented his disappointment on his Facebook account when he had to wait in Singapore for a visa to gain entry into Indonesia.

The 44th-ranked player encountered difficulties in securing an Indonesian visa as the country has no diplomatic relations with Israel.

According to AFP, the secretary general of BWF Thomas Lund visited Zilberman in Singapore to help him in obtaining an Indonesian visa to participate in the championship, which will help to gain points necessary to qualify for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.(*)

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