1989 Maccabiah Games

The 1989 13th Maccabiah Games brought 4,500 athletes to Israel from 45 nations.

13th Maccabiah
1989 Maccabiah logo.png
Host cityTel Aviv, Israel
Nations participating45
Debuting countries Hong Kong
 Soviet Union
 South Korea
Athletes participating4400
Main venueRamat Gan Stadium

Jewish athletes from Hungary participated for the first time since World War II, Jewish athletes from Russia had been permitted, by their country, to play for the first time.

Lithuania competed in first and second games, but had to stop because of occupation by Soviet Union. In 1989 Lithuania reentered the games and it was the first time after occupation when athletes from Lithuania participated under Lithuanian flag in competition recognized by IOC.[1]


The Maccabiah Games were first held in 1932.[2] In 1961, they were declared a "Regional Sports Event" by, and under the auspices and supervision of, the International Olympic Committee.[3][4][5]

Notable medalistsEdit

American Olympian Ken Flax won the gold medal in the hammer throw with a 78.86 meter toss.[6][7] American Olympian and world champion Joanna Zeiger competed in swimming and won a gold medal, a silver medal, and two bronze medals.[8][9] American squash player Stephen L. Green competed, but could not repeat his 1985 bronze medal performance.[10] Chris O'Loughlin won a silver medal in epee in fencing for the United States. Basketball player Jerry Simon, who later made aliyah and played professionally in Israel, won a silver medal with Team USA.[11]

Israeli Ron Kaplan won a gold medal in the gymnastics individual all-around competition.[12] Argentine soccer player Esteban Becker won a silver medal.[13] Israeli Lior Arditti won a gold medal with the Israeli basketball team.[14]

Israel won 97 golden medals, while United States finished second with 74 golds.

Closing ceremonyEdit

The closing ceremony was held at the Western Wall in Jerusalem for the first time.

Participating Jewish communitiesEdit


  1. ^ "Prieš 25 metus "Makabi" atletai pirmieji iškėlė trispalvę" (in Lithuanian). lrytas.lt. 2014-01-08. Archived from the original on 2014-01-09. Retrieved 2014-01-09.
  2. ^ "The 20th Maccabiah Games: A brief History (Part 1)," The Canadian Jewish News.
  3. ^ Helen Jefferson Lenskyj (2012). Gender Politics and the Olympic Industry. Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 9781137291158.
  4. ^ Mitchell G. Bard and Moshe Schwartz (2005). 1001 Facts Everyone Should Know about Israel p. 84.
  5. ^ "History of the Maccabiah Games". Maccabi Australia.
  6. ^ The Sidelines: Security Tight at Maccabiah Games - latimes
  7. ^ Flax sets Maccabiah record - UPI Archives
  8. ^ Amateur Career - Joanna Zeiger - Olympian & World Champion
  9. ^ Joanna Zeiger Inducted into the National Jewish Sports Hall of Fame and Museum | stanton-company.com
  10. ^ Stephen Green & Jeff Sutton Buy Out 650 Fifth Avenue Tenant Juicy Couture For $51 Million - Jewish Business News
  11. ^ "Jerry Simon; Basketball - 2004". Southern California Jewish Sports Hall of Fame.
  12. ^ "Results Plus". The New York Times. 5 July 1989.
  13. ^ Esteban Becker
  14. ^ SHARON ROBB (December 27, 1989). "ISRAELI GETTING BASKETBALL EDUCATION". Sun-Sentinel.